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Physician Lounge

By Doug Wysockey-Johnson

Do You Need Your Patients?

In looking at the connection between different relationships and resiliency, we turn to the physician-patient relationship.  While this relationship can be a contributor to stress, other times it does just the opposite.  Most physicians feel that the relationship with patients is the best part of their work. Why?

Dr. Allan Verrill, Chief Medical Officer at Littleton Adventist Hospital writes:

I believe the problem of physician professional dissatisfaction and burnout can be combatted, at least in part, by purposely choosing to lean a bit further into the life stories of our patients. Doing this is not always easy or practical. Under the right circumstances, however, deeper relationships with our patients can go a long way in reaffirming the reasons most of us went into medicine. The extra investment usually pays back with tangible and high value dividends to our morale and psyche. I also encourage you to make it a point to take a moment and share a good patient or personal story with a colleague this week. I have no doubt that you and your listener will both benefit from the time spent and the words shared.  (LAH Physician Communique, November 2017)

Jimmy Buffet usually ends his concerts with a heartfelt thank you to his audience.  He knows that without the audience, he has no way to practice his craft and do what he loves to do.  The same is generally true for physicians-no patients, no physicians.  Your patients provide you with the opportunity to do what you love doing.  So yes, your patients need you.  But you need them as well.  It is a mutually dependent relationship of the best sort.

Think about the patients you have seen in the last week and reflect on what you have learned through your patient encounters.

The Physician Lounge

At its best, the Physician Lounge is a place of conversation and reflection. As a doctor, sometimes what you need is a chance to connect with other physicians, bouncing ideas off each other, laughing or venting. Other times you just need a moment to think in the midst of a hectic schedule. Physician Colleague Reflections by Lumunos are an attempt to get at the spirit of the Physician Lounge. In simple email format, they provide an opportunity to connect, discuss, vent, laugh, or reflect.

If you are interested in providing the Lumunos Physician Colleague Reflections to your medical staff or physician group on a weekly basis, contact Doug Wysockey-Johnson at