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Doctor – Patient Relationship

doctor patient relationship
July 13, 2023
Dr. G. Balamurali

Doctors’ day is celebrated on July 1st every year in memory of Dr B C Roy, to acknowledge and appreciate them for the selfless service, hard work, tireless care, dedication and the invaluable contribution they make towards the growth of the Nation. The theme for National Doctors Day 2023 is 'Celebrating Resilience and Healing Hands.'

There is no doubt that a doctor – patient relationship is built on trust, communication, care and collaboration. This unique and delicate bond plays a major role in a doctor detecting the health condition of a patient, his treatment plan, medical care and the positive health outcome. It is common in India to hear a patient say “Half of my ailment is cured on seeing that particular doctor”, “That doctor is like a God to me” or “His touch is enough to cure the patient”.

Doctor – Patient relationship is based on several factors

TRUST: The trust is established by way the doctor addresses the patient, listens to them, shows empathy, consoles and shows genuine concern. The patient feels safe, comfortable and confident that he will be free of his health problem.

COMMUNICATION: Open and transparent communication, explanation of the problem and concerns in detail which the patient can understand, complete treatment options, potential risks and clarification of all doubts without getting irritated gives the patient satisfaction.

RESPECT: Respect has to be both ways when the doctor addresses the patients concerns, however small or big, suggesting treatment plan based on their socioeconomic status, family condition and their preferences helps the patient to make decisions faster and clearer. Similarly, the patient has to respect the doctor’s expertise, limitations and suggestions. Shared decision with mutual agreement leads to better outcomes and improved overall well-being.

SUPPORT: When the doctors show empathy, care, concern and reassures, he alleviates the patients fears, anxiety and doubt. This helps in the patients overall and psychological wellbeing.

CONTINUITY; Sticking to the same doctor over a period of time gives continuity of care as he has better understanding of the patient’s medical history, needs, fears, personal circumstances and the development. Long term care provides timely interventions and better health management.

By providing holistic and comprehensive health care, the doctor empowers a patient to actively participate in the wellbeing of their own health journey. It is by nurturing the trust, communication, respect, support and continues care, a doctor ensures improved patient outcomes, satisfaction and a complete medical care.

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Internationally trained Spinal Neurosurgeon with 24 years of surgical experience, from UK. Extensively trained in all niche aspects of spinal surgery as part of 3-year fellowship in the UK (Liverpool & Nottingham), USA (San Francisco & Chicago) and Switzerland (Zurich). Senior Spine and Neurosurgeon in India since 2011.
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About Dr. G. Balamurali
Head of Spine Surgery
Consultant Spine and Neurosurgeon
MBBS, MRCS (Ed), MD (UK), FRCS (Surgical Neurology)
Fellow in Minimally Invasive Spine Surgery - UK, USA, Switzerland
Fellow in Complex Spine Surgery – UK, Switzerland
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Dr. G. Balamurali
Dr. G. Balamurali is one of the leading spine surgeons in Chennai, India. He is internationally trained in all niche aspects of Spine Surgery. He has over 26 years of surgical experience in this field.
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No 199, Luz Church Road, Mylapore, Chennai - 600 004
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