Professionalism is a core competency of physicians. To be professional it is required to make three commitments: become clinical skilled, protect and promote the patient’s health-related wellbeing and to maintain, strengthen and pass on medicine to future physicians, patients, and society (Mueller, 2009).
Professionalism includes: respect, compassion, integrity, responsiveness, accountability, commitment to excellence and sensitivity to diversity (Doukas et al., 2013). It is important for us as health professionals to try and develop these qualities. By having these qualities it will help us to be better health professionals and put our own feelings and interests second to the patient’s (Doukas et al., 2013).
The best interest of the patient is the only interest to be considered but sometimes I struggle to put my own feelings aside. I know the patient comes first but sometimes my own values influence my attitude towards a patient. If I do not agree with their actions or choices in life I must still provide the best medical care for them regardless what I think. I must remember that they might have different circumstances and try to treat them as an equal.
The patient is our number one priority. Their needs must always come first and I must keep in mind that I have a responsibility towards them to provide the best health care possible.
Doukas, D., McCullough, L., Wear, S., Lehmann, L., Nixon, L., & Carrese, J. et al. (2013). The Challenge of Promoting Professionalism Through Medical Ethics and Humanities Education. Academic Medicine, 88(11), 1624-1629.
Mueller, P. (2009). Incorporating Professionalism into Medical Education: The Mayo Clinic Experience. The Keio Journal Of Medicine, 58(3), 133-143.