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Can the humanisation of medicine affect doctors' satisfaction levels?

15 April 2024

In the day-to-day practice of medicine, patients and their health always come first. However, the wellbeing of doctors, who play a key role in the delivery of healthcare, is also equally important. Satisfied, motivated and empathetic doctors not only have the potential to improve the quality of medical care, but also influence the wellbeing of patients. Against the backdrop of these important issues, it is worth looking at how the evolving humanisation of medicine can positively affect the wellbeing of doctors and contribute to improving the quality of healthcare. This will provide an understanding of why this topic is becoming increasingly important in the medical field and the benefits that can arise from a more humanistic approach.

The impact of humanisation on reducing physician burnout

Modern medicine presents unique challenges that often put pressure on doctors. Excessive bureaucracy is an aspect that has become an integral part of medical practice. Administrative processes, the need for medical records and the constant need for reporting place a significant burden on doctors. Complicated procedures and formal requirements can lead to frustration and burnout. Doctors who spend more time filling in forms than directly caring for patients may feel a lack of job satisfaction.

Constant time pressure is another challenge that doctors have to deal with. In an environment where the number of patients exceeds the availability of medical resources, doctors are often forced to work under time pressure. Quick decisions and shortened appointments can lead to a lack of job satisfaction and mental and physical fatigue.

Attention to the wellbeing of doctors is essential for the provision of high quality medical care. Satisfied and motivated doctors are more likely to pay attention to each patient, listen to their needs and build lasting relationships. This in turn affects the quality of care, increases patient trust and can lead to better patient outcomes.

Implementing the humanisation of medicine, i.e. focusing on doctor-patient relationships, empathy and building trust, can help doctors deal with excessive bureaucracy and time pressures. A humanistic approach to medicine can also help to increase doctors' professional satisfaction by bringing meaning and passion back into the practice of medicine.

Motivation and commitment of doctors

An empathetic approach to patients, a key element in the humanisation of medicine, not only benefits patients but can also have a significant impact on doctors' motivation and commitment. Job satisfaction and a sense of professional fulfilment are closely linked to the quality of the relationships doctors build with their patients. Building relationships based on trust and understanding can also lead to better cooperation from patients, which is crucial for effective treatment.

In addition, an empathetic approach can reduce work-related stress levels, as doctors who are able to establish an emotional connection with patients often experience greater job satisfaction. Job satisfaction resulting from positive interactions with patients can be a powerful motivator and counteract professional burnout.

Building positive relationships 

Building positive, empathetic relationships with patients is one of the most rewarding aspects of doctors' work. These relationships, based on mutual trust, respect and understanding, can have a significant impact on doctors' overall job satisfaction.

When doctors focus on building strong bonds with their patients, they can experience greater professional satisfaction. An empathetic approach that takes into account not only the physical but also the emotional and psychological needs of the patient creates deeper and more meaningful relationships. Doctors who take the time to listen and try to understand their patients' perspective often experience a greater sense of fulfilment, seeing the direct impact of their work on people's lives.

In addition, a strong relationship with patients can lead to better cooperation and involvement on the part of patients in the treatment process. When patients feel understood and respected by their doctor, they are more likely to comply with medical recommendations and actively participate in the treatment process. This in turn can lead to better health outcomes, which is an additional source of satisfaction for doctors.

These relationships also have a positive impact on the working environment. Collaboration based on empathy and mutual understanding promotes better communication and interaction within the medical team. Doctors who feel part of a supportive and positive work environment are more satisfied with their jobs, which translates into a lower risk of burnout.

The humanisation of medicine, by introducing empathetic practices in healthcare and building positive relationships with patients, has a significant impact on both patients and doctors themselves. Training medical staff in empathy and interpersonal communication not only improves the quality of patient care, but also contributes to greater job satisfaction and motivation among doctors. Strong empathic relationships with patients can reduce the risk of professional burnout, increase a sense of fulfilment and improve treatment efficiency.