The medical profession is undergoing a period of change.No longer are doctors and surgeons regarded as the font of all medical knowledge and no longer are they protected from criticism in the way they were once.It used to be that doctors and surgeons remained unchallenged. What they doctor advised, the patient acquiesced. What other choice did a patient have? They had no knowledge of the human body or of illness and medication and they wanted to feel better and live.
While patients want to feel good and want to extend their lives – that much remains the same – it is no longer true to say that those in the medical profession remains unchallenged in the same way.The rise of alternative medicine has resulted in many things. For starters, it gives patients an alternative to mainstream medicine and it gives patients alternative practioners to mainstream medical professionals. This doesn’t only mean that patients have another option in the first place, but it also means that patients can go somewhere else if they aren’t happy with their doctor.
Mainstream doctors do not only have to contend with alternative medical practioners – who may, frustratingly for them, hold the bare minimum of medical qualifications and experience – but they also have to contend with the patient, who, thanks to the internet, is quick to diagnose themselves and request treatment.In some ways, the humility forced onto the medical profession is a good thing, and who is to say that alternative medicine doesn’t hold gems of knowledge?
A good doctor or surgeon will keep their mind open, appreciating that mainstream medical equipment and medical supplies aren’t the only way. They will listen to their patient and try and be sensitive about what medical equipment and medical supplies to use – if a patient is adamantly opposed to a certain drug, a good doctor will respect that.Finally, a good doctor will keep learning, and realise that no one can know everything.