Why do doctors and nurses need to be more involved in patient care?
Medical staff, including physicians, nurses and other healthcare workers, are essential to providing care in a modern healthcare system, but many are less involved in patients’ daily lives.
A report published by the University of Queensland and the Australian College of Physicians found that some doctors and health professionals are less engaged with patients than they used to be.
In a study of more than 7,500 health care professionals aged 40 and over, researchers found that the number of doctor and nurse visits per day decreased from about six per day in 2012 to less than five per day now.
The researchers also found that nurses, who had been trained to provide care, were less engaged than they were in the past, but still performed a great deal of care in hospitals and clinics.
Some doctors were less involved with patients in the same way as in the 1990s, and the number they performed more patient care has decreased.
According to the report, “The proportion of patients that were seen by a doctor in 2016 was almost twice the proportion seen by an Australian nurse, a decline that was mirrored by the number seen by other health care workers.”
The study also found more than a third of health care providers said that their primary role in patient interaction was to provide the health care services.
But in the latest research, researchers also wanted to find out whether the health system’s primary role was to meet the needs of patients or if it was focusing on the needs and desires of their employers.
“There is growing evidence that the primary role of healthcare professionals in the health service is increasingly being defined by the needs, preferences and needs of their employer,” the authors wrote.
There are a number of factors that can affect whether healthcare professionals feel they can be fully involved in their patients’ day-to-day lives, said Dr David Hirst, associate professor of social work at the University, who was not involved in the research.
For example, patients may want to talk with a doctor and feel comfortable asking for help, or they may need to go for a long walk.
And some doctors might be working from home or doing their own practice.
Other factors can include whether the healthcare worker is employed in a private practice, or if they are a part-time employee.
Dr Hirst said there were a range of factors affecting the healthcare workforce’s role in patients lives.
“It’s a lot of factors, from the healthcare profession to the workplace and the environment to family and community,” he said.
“There are some very challenging issues to face, particularly in the workforce.”
He said the study also showed that there was a “significant difference” in the levels of engagement between male and female healthcare workers.
Women tended to be less engaged and more focused on their own needs, while men tended to focus more on their patients.
“When you look at the numbers, you’re seeing a very different representation of healthcare workers in the community, and it’s not as uniform across all professions,” Dr Hirst told AAP.
He added that there were also important differences in the healthcare environment and culture.
One of the most important things that we can do in the coming year to encourage more women to be involved in healthcare is to make sure that people who are looking to enter the workforce have the knowledge and skills they need, he said.
“Topics:health,health-policy,community-and-society,health,relief-and_disease,healthcare-facilities,healthy-care,united-statesFirst posted July 16, 2020 08:05:24Contact Julie Hoey