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Out of PracticeFighting for Primary Care Medicine in America$
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Frederick M. MD Barken

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780801449765

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9780801449765.001.0001

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A First Visit with the Doctor

A First Visit with the Doctor

(p.7) 1 A First Visit with the Doctor
Out of Practice

Frederick M. Barken

Cornell University Press

This chapter reflects on the doctor's normal day at the clinic based on personal experience. In particular, it cites the constant diversions and other challenges throughout a long and arduous day that are distressing not only to doctors but also to patients. The chapter first discusses what has been percieved to be a wide chasm that exists between the ideal of high-quality compassionate primary care for all Americans and its implications for physician-patient relationships. It then describes what a waiting room should be: clean, well lit, comfortable, quiet, and must appear professional but not showy or opulent. The chapter also emphasizes the importance of effective patient scheduling and the executive function of the doctor's secretary while noting the business side of medicine. Finally, it argues that we need to consider professional satisfaction among practicing physicians in order to achieve high-quality primary care for all Americans.

Keywords:   patients, primary care, physician-patient relationship, waiting room, scheduling, secretary, medicine, professional satisfaction, physicians

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