General

How do you handle DOCTOR SHAMING?

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8 Jul 2016 - General
 

Social media had been a place for everything-- meeting new people, reconnecting with friends, a market place, and even a place for rants. I have seen  a lot of doctor shaming posts in social media recently.

Just recently, an angry post about a doctor texting in front of a critically ill patient was posted in the social media. This post had gone viral and people who are siding with the relative's patient (the original poster) had a lot to say about the doctor's alleged behavior.  Another recent viral post was about a doctor sleeping on duty, at the patient's bedside. Just as well as the previous, there were people who really believed that the doctor was slacking off.

Luckily, all of these doctor shaming posts had been defended and justified by colleagues and fellow healthcare practitioners. But for the laypeople who does not have any idea what goes around in a hospital duty, the involved  doctors were victim of the public's ignorance, where in fact, they were just doing their job. The worst part is that they post photos of these doctors without consent from the person himself.

I have asked colleagues about this and most of them are scared that someone may just take their photo unknowingly, even if they were just doing their job, following the hospital's system or catering to their humanly needs. The "social media thinking" of documenting almost just everything is starting to get out of hand,  in this case and it does not only harm their names but the institution that they are affiliated with.

For me, I think it is unfair that nurses, doctors and every hospital staff are working hard and fair with these patients, yet the public still expects more than that. Have you ever encountered doctor shaming? What are your thoughts?

I had friends ask me the same thing. "Why are doctors hours so long?" I would tell people that our hours aren't the regular 8-5 and they are just shocked on how we are able to function. Like your IT friend I have a friend as well who said that he wouldn't want to be treated by a doctor who didn't sleep for 24 hours. I guess our hours are like that for the purpose of training as we see more patient progress in 24 hours as compared to 8 hours or 12 hours. We don't need so...
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I think patients (and their friends and families) forget that people who work in hospitals are also people. We have personal lives, we have problems and as we are human beings, we get tired. We find ways to run like machines, but ultimately, we have needs too. I think some slip-ups like these should be understood as an understanding human being. I do not work in the hospital but I have family who are doctors and dentists, who cannot avoid sleeping in the bus, cab and even dangerously doze-off w...
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@Jennifer, sadly, encounters like these are really inevitable especially in this line of work. Somehow, it made me feel that our working activities were compared to an 8-5 job, which is not what most residency program were schemed out. A friend of mine, who works in the IT side asked me why are healthcare practitioners overworked. She opined that entrusting her health to someone whose decision making might be impaired due to long hours and worn out mind might not be the best idea. But we gotta d...
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The viral post on the doctor sleeping made me immensely disappointed. It was so insensitive of that person to take a picture of the doctor and say that they were slacking off. I did like the response of other doctors who comically post pictures of themselves sleeping on the job as well. There was one where a doctor was sleeping inside a table and the other on top. It is difficult to prevent people from taking pictures and posting them and making one sided comments. So they caught a doctor sleepi...
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Dr. Esther, luckily, a lot of people were defending the doctors involved in these posts. They were trying to explain how a hospital duty works, what happens when a patient is received in the er or the wards, etc. Which is I think what we need in an environment where not everyone could understand what we do in our line of work. I think too much medical drama made them believe that they know "enough" already to make a judgement themselves. Here is the link, some parts are in Filipino whi...
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It's really upsetting that these events are taking place, we can try to be constantly aware of a patient or relatives taking our pictures at work or ensure that we are always professional, but at times we may be very tired and are caught off guard. I think one way of combating this issue is to support our fellow colleagues on social media. If and when we see attempts to shame our profession on social media, we can help by leaving comments that would help the public look at the situation from...
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Dr. Ziwei, I remembered a story our professor in legal medicine had told us back in med school. A patient sued a physician because the physician was wearing a very informal clothing during a meet up. Story was a blur to me right now, but from what I have remembered, the patient and the physician had to meet due to a reason I can't remember, but I think it was not for a consult, but somehow still work related. The physician showed up in flip flops I guess and the patient sued him for being un...
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I am always wary of patient and relatives taking photos or videos of me during consultation. There is no way we can social media-proof ourselves and in the most likelihood we will be caught off guard and appeared as the ultimate villain in one of our patient's social media post. I have made it a point to keep myself well-kempt just in case I caught the eyes of a movie producer when i appear in social media posting. I will always be on guard and vigilant that I may be secretly taped during a ...
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Hi Tara, so far I have never experienced being shamed by anybody on social media. But last year, I was informed by a ward nurse that a relative of my patient took a video of me while changing dressings and doing routine bedside physical examination without my knowledge. To confirm this, I went to the patient's room and asked the alleged relative who took my video if it was true. To my surprise, the relative admitted that he really took my video to share it with his siblings abroad. Eventhoug...
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