Wednesday, 15 January 2014

Nanjing Hospital - lack of trust means doctors carry pepper spray and perform defensive medicine

Doctors in Nanjing say the complete breakdown in trust between hospitals and patients means that clinical staff now carry pepper spray for their own protection against attacks, and carry out many unnecessary tests just to protect their own back.
In an article in the Guangming Daily doctors say that in the 'old days' before a routine procedure such as an appendix removal doctors would simply have nurses prepare the patient and ask them if they were allergic to penicillin. Now staff have to routinely test all patients for infectious diseases such as syphilis and HIV because otherwise they fear being accused by pateints with these infections that they were picked up in hospital. These additional tests mean patients have to pay more money, adding to the dissatisfaction. Doctors say that patients and their families now query every single action and intervention by the doctors, making their lives miserable and prolonging consultation times.

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