Monday, November 14, 2011

Three Stages of a Profession

I propose the following stages of the medical profession:

Stage 1- From the time of Hippocrates and the birth of medicine, the best doctors knew how little they knew. Their main task was to humbly comfort.

Stage 2- Starting with antibiotics, knowledge started to equal treatment, and the best doctors sought as much knowledge as possible. Knowledge was power.

Stage 3- With the success of stage two, demographic shifts, and the advent of digital medicine, chronic disease abounds and the relevant knowledge is everywhere.

In this third and brand-new stage, I humbly propose that patients are best served not through seeking more knowledge, but in seeking creative and innovative applications of knowledge.

Medical education is run by the champions of stage 2, and they understandably encourage their charges to learn as much as possible.

Knowledge is certainly important, but patients need a medical education that serves stage 3. I wonder how to do that.

2 comments:

Santosh said...

I agree with your thoughts...One of the proofs for the Stage 3 concepts can be the arrival of Web 2.0 in disease management for example websites like patientslikeme.....

astupple said...

Santosh,

I'm totally with you- thanks for commenting!