Has the healthcare industry gone too far in cracking down on disruptive behavior? Is it okay for doctors to be rude, dismissive and act like jerks if they have superior surgical skills?
Hospitals have long struggled with how to handle disruptive behavior among doctors, sometimes turning a blind eye, other times disciplining or firing them. Getting rid of disruptive docs has become a popular approach as the industry rewards organizations for high patient satisfaction scores.
The biggest problem with disruptive workplace behavior is the negative impact it can have on the patient, FierceHealthcare reported earlier this year. In many instances, the bad behavior distracts the healthcare team, which can lead to medical mistakes.
But aarticle by Becker's Hospital Review calls into question the "zero tolerance" movement and why disruptive docs may not be so bad after all. While some surgeons may be cold and abrasive, they may also be better doctors than their kinder, gentler counterparts, according to the article. Yet the doctors with the better bedside manners are rewarded because they have higher patient satisfaction scores even though they have poor patient outcomes compared to their meaner counterparts.
"In trying to shape our trainees to be all things to everyone ... we run the risk of creating a workforce caught somewhere in the middle, not doing anything well," Shen says.
So how does the industry balance the need for happy patients and skilled clinicians? One way is to recognize that satisfaction--how positive a patient feels about an encounter--is just one part of the patient experience, writes Jason A. Wolf, president of The Beryl Institute, in a blog post for Hospital Impact.
There are divergent opinions as to what effect disruptive behavior can have..
The Joint Commission clearly states, "disruptive behavior is a sentinel event"