patient in hospital NPO after discharge

Tips: How to Worsen Your Already-Terrible Bedside Manner

  • 3K
    Shares

patient in hospital

You may find your bedside manner is pretty terrible given how busy you are and your general frustration with humanity as a whole.  If despite these things, you still feel like you’re establishing too much rapport with your patients, here are some helpful methods to really worsen those interpersonal skills and make that patient-provider relationship way more distant.

Barge in unexpectedly and leave just as fast.

Don’t knock.  Just bust the door open and get in there, time is a-ticking!  Don’t introduce yourself.  Go right into talking shop and then be on your way.

Do not know your patient well.

Get your patient’s name wrong when you enter.  Who has the time to look something like that up?  “You’re not Mrs. Brown?  Are you sure?  I’m pretty sure you’re Mrs. Brown.”

Look like a raging hot mess.

Look flustered, disheveled, and unprofessional.  Make sure all those stains are noticeable: blood, urine, eggs, and coffee.  Having stuff fall out of your pockets is a plus!

Never sit down to talk eye-to-eye.

Always tower above your patients at bedside.  This is important.  Take advantage of their vulnerability by standing tall and talking down on them.  You are in charge.  This is not a team effort.

Be distracted, very distracted.

You are being pulled in millions of directions; act that way!  Keep looking at your smartphone, notes, pager.  Tap your feet.  Click your pen repeatedly.  Keep looking at your watch.  Pace nervously.  Let your patient know you have other things to do.  Lose focus and lose it fast.

Do not listen.  Really.

Listening, good listening really takes some time and patience.  Since you don’t have the luxury of either, don’t bother.

Don’t observe anything.

A patient’s conversational tone, degree of eye contact, and body language can tell you plenty.  That’s too bad.  But that’s the sacrifice we make when charting is our first and foremost priority!

Never use open-ended questions.

Open-ended questions allow patients to talk for a longer period of time.  Unacceptable.  A good starting question is, “Do you have a way home?”

Be vague and use big medical words to impress them.

Say something like, “This could be anything, but we’ll take it one step at a time.”  Then impress them with your array of unpronounceable and equally unspellable polysyllabic medical terminology.  You’re a medical professional, damn it!  Go put on a show!  They can just look it up on Google or WebMD anyway.  (We like the term dysdiadochokinesia.)

Privacy is overrated.

We all like some good gossip at work.  Talk loudly, keep the door open, or even better, have your “private” conversations in public settings.  Invite anyone to the conversation, including those not involved in the patient’s care.

Show no signs of being human.

It’s easy to forget that you’re a volume-based, revenue-generating, emotionless, disease-processing machine!  As any hospital administrator will tell you, compassion, caring, patience, and sympathy are signs of weakness.  Show no interest at all costs!

Dr. 99 wrote this article while at a patient’s bedside.

image_pdfimage_print
  • Show Comments

  • Avatar
    Justin Leandro

    Pretty sure I already do all these things

  • Avatar
    Jonathan Donevant

    Far too often…

  • Avatar
    Sarah Kohrmann

    If I can call you by name without thinking about it for a hot second, you’re at the hospital too often ;)

  • Avatar
    William T Walker

    That describes my (former) doctor.

  • Avatar
    Szymon Ostrowski

    LPT: Pick up the chart as you walk in and have it open as you approach the patient – looking through the chart prevents any eye contact with the patient and also creates a physical barrier, helping prevent building rapport

  • Avatar
    Szymon Ostrowski

    LPT: Pick up the chart as you walk in and have it open as you approach the patient – looking through the chart prevents any eye contact with the patient and also creates a physical barrier, helping prevent building rapport

  • Avatar
    Jane Smith

    I’ve known lots of medical professionals like this over the years – unfortunately!!

  • Avatar
    Jane Smith

    I’ve known lots of medical professionals like this over the years – unfortunately!!

  • Avatar
    Jane Smith

    I’ve known lots of medical professionals like this over the years – unfortunately!!

  • Avatar
    Greg Miller

    They forgot ” always ask an open ended question and then put your stethoscope in you ears listen to lung and heart sounds and constantly ask them to stop talking so you can hear their lungs and heart”

  • Avatar
    Greg Miller

    They forgot ” always ask an open ended question and then put your stethoscope in you ears listen to lung and heart sounds and constantly ask them to stop talking so you can hear their lungs and heart”

  • Avatar
    Greg Miller

    They forgot ” always ask an open ended question and then put your stethoscope in you ears listen to lung and heart sounds and constantly ask them to stop talking so you can hear their lungs and heart”

  • Avatar
    Greg Miller

    They forgot ” always ask an open ended question and then put your stethoscope in you ears listen to lung and heart sounds and constantly ask them to stop talking so you can hear their lungs and heart”

  • Avatar
    Greg Miller

    They forgot ” always ask an open ended question and then put your stethoscope in you ears listen to lung and heart sounds and constantly ask them to stop talking so you can hear their lungs and heart”

  • Avatar
    Greg Miller

    They forgot ” always ask an open ended question and then put your stethoscope in you ears listen to lung and heart sounds and constantly ask them to stop talking so you can hear their lungs and heart”

  • Avatar
    Greg Miller

    They forgot ” always ask an open ended question and then put your stethoscope in you ears listen to lung and heart sounds and constantly ask them to stop talking so you can hear their lungs and heart”

  • Avatar
    Greg Miller

    They forgot ” always ask an open ended question and then put your stethoscope in you ears listen to lung and heart sounds and constantly ask them to stop talking so you can hear their lungs and heart”

  • Avatar
    Xavier Paré

    A good starting question : “do you have a way home”

  • Avatar
    Xavier Paré

    A good starting question : “do you have a way home”

  • Avatar
    Natasha Thompson

    Peter Thompson Agt

  • Avatar
    Natasha Thompson

    Peter Thompson Agt

  • Avatar
    Natasha Thompson

    Peter Thompson Agt

  • Avatar
    Chris Stalling

    Hahahaha!!!!

  • Avatar
    Chris Stalling

    Hahahaha!!!!

  • Avatar
    Chris Stalling

    Hahahaha!!!!

  • Avatar
    Chris Stalling

    Hahahaha!!!!

  • Avatar
    Chris Stalling

    Hahahaha!!!!

  • Avatar
    Chris Stalling

    Hahahaha!!!!

  • Avatar
    Julien Turgeon

    Xavier Paré Xavier Zwiebel Michel Ménassa quand même pratique pour l’avenir

  • Avatar
    Camie Wright

    Sooo funny!

  • Avatar
    Erin Giles

    Hahaaaaa!

  • Avatar
    Elizabeth Charles

    I think I almost enjoys all the medical staff comments more than the articles themselves.

  • Avatar
    Elizabeth Charles

    And if not I’ll get the nurse to get you a taxi voucher and leave anyways

  • Avatar
    Amber Stokes

    We had a physician almost in the bed with a patient who was extremely hard of hearing so he could talk in her good ear with out shouting her business all over the hospital. Still have some good ones out there.

  • Avatar
    Robyn Ayers

    My favorite part about working with you was how you could walk into a room with a junior marine in it acting a fool and destroy their day and turn right around and go into a peds pts room and just turn into a fairy princess. All love and light. It was pretty awesome to watch. Heather Hinshelwood-Rangel

  • Avatar
    Whit Johnstone

    You forgot “everyone over 65 loves being treated like a kindergartener.”

  • Avatar
    Beth Morris

    This is what they teach in med school.

  • Avatar
    Beth S Brock

    Lisa Herrera…. I’m hysterical. ” Do you have a ride home ? ” bwhahahaha !

  • Avatar
    Beth S Brock

    Yes !!!!

  • Avatar
    GJ Hadeed

    You forgot “Interrupting patient mid sentence to show them a picture of the nice sports car you are going to buy….then interrupt them again and ask yellow or red?”

  • Avatar
    Melissa Stalling

    Chris Stalling lolololol A good starting question is, “Do you have a way home?”

  • Avatar
    Morgan McCarroll

    Let’s not forget performing a detailed wallet biopsy.

  • Avatar
    Jason Presley

    Sad but often true

  • Avatar
    Jamie Peekaboo Santos

    You can’t make that up. It happened. Most ridiculous charting I have ever read.

  • Avatar
    Marilyn Smith

    I kept waiting for the humor or irony. Oh well, acknowledgement is the first step blah blah blah.

  • Avatar
    Renee Willhoit

    Dr Molly ?????

  • Avatar
    Christina Wintrup

    Susan Barnes Riggs

  • Avatar
    Carrie Schneider Astrab

    My favorite, “Do you have a way home?” Lol!

  • Avatar
    Antony Gypsy Bisaccio

    Oh yes.

  • Avatar
    Claudine Schorfheide

    Antony Gypsy Bisaccio print and post

  • Avatar
    Sondra France

    Wilson Everyone Needs To Have A Doctor Like You With Bed Side Manner And Kindness That Are Over The Top. I Am Sure Dave Is Looking Down Right Now From Heaven Saying I trusted Dr Wilson and I Put My Life IN His Hands. Thank You For all Your Kindness At A Time We Needed It The Most

  • Avatar
    Gomerblog

    thanks!

  • Avatar
    Rebecca Gage

    Participate in a 2-star surgical residency program.

  • Avatar
    Emily Carolyn Houston

    LOL Katie Houston Lanier

  • Avatar
    Roxanne Conway

    May *have had. Not may of had.

  • Avatar
    Jamie Peekaboo Santos

    Make sure to round just before midnight on Christmas Eve while drunk, and make sure to chart A&Ox1 about a 50 year old who took ambien 2 hours earlier.

  • Avatar
    Amanda Moore

    At first I thought the guy in the pic was Charlie Sheen.. I had to scroll back up real quick.. Disappointing. That wouldve been hilarious! Lol

  • Avatar
    Heidi Grossa Lopez

    I am dying!!!

  • Avatar
    Luke Robinson

    Take your pick really…

  • Avatar
    Adam AufderHeide

    It’s easier to just know them by disease process. That way, if you have 8 SBOs, it’s like just having one patient and you can actually make it to noon conference.

  • Avatar
    Sathish Chandra

    Best way out of the room: “I’m going to go look at your scans. You get some sleep now”

  • Avatar
    Cassie Cobb

    Jenny Codding

  • Avatar
    Jonathan Donevant

    Wait… We are actually supposed to know patients by names? I thought they were just room numbers…

  • Avatar
    Ellen W. MacNaughton

    They forgot to add “Speak rapidly in a low pitched monotone only dogs can hear”. This is especially effective when dealing with the elderly and those of us who may have attended one too many rock concerts.

  • Avatar
    Sarah Carney Bilek

    Lol

  • Avatar
    Marc Ellis

    Its like they followed my ward round. Szymon Ostrowski im sure is the opposite.

  • Avatar
    Alex Nesbitt

    On point

  • Avatar
    Susan Boyd

    Written at patient’s bedside. The Perfection of multitasking!

  • Avatar
    Patronus Killinger

    Alex Nesbitt it’s like they know me

  • Avatar
    Sara Śamuelu

    Clementine Hicks ward tactics

  • Avatar
    Sarah Christina

    Danielle Kristine lol

  • Avatar
    Chrissy Brown

    Maryellen Mackey Thibodeau – This is funny!

  • Avatar
    Ben Gunatwo

    Marc Ellis – we are already pros though

  • Avatar
    Caroline Herron

    Roibeárd Tomás Mac Brádaigh, Natalie Jumper, Fiona Hand, Kathleen Walsh, Orla McCormack some useful tips here !!

  • Avatar
    Jess Kraljevic

    Hahaha

  • Avatar
    Seth Wilson

    Christian Joseph

  • Avatar
    Kelda Jay

    Angela Jess xx

  • Avatar
    Lauren Bowling

    Have had.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

comment *

  • name *

  • email *

  • website *

You May Also Like

routine blood work urine A-fib B-minus

Ophthalmologist Dresses Up as Doctor for Halloween

4.7KSharesINDIANAPOLIS, IN – Sporting a stethoscope and a white coat, 58-year-old ophthalmologist Donald Myers ...

motion artifact

Radiologist Blames Crumbling Marriage on Motion Artifact

326SharesATLANTA, GA – Radiology attending Xavier Robinson has thought about it long and hard.  ...