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A physician experiences unprofessional behavior. What happened next?

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A physician experiences unprofessional behavior. What happened next?

"Setting: An impersonal, windowless conference room within a hospital Characters: A nurse in charge (NIC), a department chair (DC) and me (ME) NIC: Thank you for joining us to discuss the…
October 22, 2020

A physician experiences unprofessional behavior. What happened next?

“Setting: An impersonal, windowless conference room within a hospital

Characters: A nurse in charge (NIC), a department chair (DC) and me (ME)

NIC: Thank you for joining us to discuss the report you made of unprofessional behavior in the operating room. We’d like to start by letting you know that in this institution, we have a culture of informality. When I first got here, I found it unsettling that doctors were called by their first names in meetings.

DC: Yes, this culture was also surprising to me. At [Ivory tower institution 1], where I trained, no one would have ever called a physician by their first name! And at [Ivory tower institution 2] where I worked before moving here, no one would have dreamed of calling a doctor by their first name. Can you imagine someone calling Dr. [Worldfamous Surgeon at Ivory tower institution 2] Steve? It never would have happened! He would have been so angry! But here, I get called by my first name pretty regularly. I’ve gotten used to it, and now I don’t even mind.

ME: We’re not here because someone called me by my first name.

DC: What do you mean?”

Sarah M. Temkin is a gynecology-oncology physician.

She shares her story and discusses her KevinMD article, “A discussion about unprofessional behavior: a play in 1 act.” (https://www.kevinmd.com/blog/2020/08/a-discussion-about-unprofessional-behavior-a-play-in-1-act.html)

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