NYT: Do You Trust the Medical Profession?

An interesting commentary from NY Times: Do You Trust the Medical Profession?

This article explains how lack of trust in medical leaders can effect response to epidemics (eg. ebola), participation in clinical trials, and influence acceptance of vaccines. In addition, on a personal level, individuals who trust their physician are more likely to continue treatment important for their health.

An excerpt:

Trust, in each other and in American institutions, is vital for our social and economic well-being: It allows us to work, buy, sell and vote with some reasonable expectation that our behavior will be met with fairness and good will.

But trust has been declining for decades, and the most tangible and immediate damage may be to public health and safety. Mistrust in the medical profession — particularly during emergencies like epidemics — can have deadly consequences…

Trust is the cornerstone of the doctor-patient relationship, and patients who trust their doctors are more likely to follow treatment plans…

Another study found that trust is one of the best predictors of whether patients follow a doctor’s advice about things like exercise, smoking cessation and condom use. Mistrust can lead people to skip the flu shot or forgo the measles vaccine for their children — with potentially serious consequences for individual patients and the broader population…

A degree of skepticism is inevitable and important. But when doubt becomes pervasive, it can erode the glue that binds society together, and the medicine that keeps us healthy.

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1 thought on “NYT: Do You Trust the Medical Profession?

  1. Pingback: Preserving the Patient-Physician Relationship | gutsandgrowth

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