Wednesday, April 05, 2006


The Mayo Clinic (quite possibly the very best medical practice anywhere, anytime -- and one of the schools I'd love to attend, why no I'm not sucking up pre-emptively, thanks) has just published an interesting new paper, which one of my classmates sent around today. It aims to identify and describe the qualities that patients are looking for in their providers. My response to it is one part "duh"-based affirmation of common-sense things, one part quietly impressed at the things patients notice and react to, and two parts relief that The System is paying attention.

For good or ill, and I happen to think it's mostly good, this whole idea of "customer service concepts have important ramifications in the medical world" has become quite mainstream. As a patient, this makes me happy because it affirms the times I've felt slighted, or felt the doc's style had a negative effect on my care. As an emergency medical paraprofessional-slash-hospital flunky, it makes me happy because my jocular, light touch might actually be noticed and appreciated by somebody. As an applicant, it makes me happy that I:
  • Have a relatively heavy run of patient-care experience on my resume
  • Have done a boatload of shadowing (and not just for the letters, either, but for the experience and perspective)
  • Am such a freak about communication skills
  • Used to friggin' teach customer service in the corporate world
Hey, anything that can ward away the panic and desperation of application season is a good thing. I'll be reading over this again fondly, long about August and September. Stay tuned.

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