Doctor-patient relationships with EMRs: a new menage a trois

Now before you go thinking this is going to be some dirty sex blog, it’s actually not.  According to Wikipedia, menage a trois literally translates as “household of three”.  I finally made another breakthrough in the past two weeks.  I’ve been thinking of ways to stretch seemingly limited space to bring on another endocrinologist in my office.  It just so happens that business is booming and it’s time to consider branching out to keep up with demand.

Now a funny thing happened on the way to the forum, as things always seem to do.  In an effort to get my patients out of the exam rooms quickly — in order to allow another potential provider to use the room — I began seeing them for the majority of the visits in my actual office.  These days I begin the visit with a brief two or three minute physical exam.  Then I invite them into my much larger and more sunlit office overlooking M street.  (This is the part where you’re supposed to say ooh-la-la!)

Well wouldn’t you know I hit a new eureka moment when I was suddenly able to type while only moving my head a little between the patient’s face and the computer screen.  Aha!  A new intimacy was suddenly upon us.  I could complete the medical interview while feeling like we were actually having an intimate discussion across the top of my big, swanky K-mart mail-order (shhh…) desk.  What’s more, we were out of the sterile exam room environment and the patients seemed more relaxed and comfortable.

It seems that the more I practice medicine using my EMR system, the more I find new and creative ways of bringing it into my relationship with patients naturally and effortlessly.  All the more positive reinforcement to practice, practice, practice…

Dr. West is an endocrinologist in private practice in Washington, DC.  He completed fellowship training in Endocrinology and Metabolism at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Dr. West opened The Washington Endocrine Clinic, PLLC, as a solo practice in 2009.  He can be reached at doctorwestindc@gmail.com.

About the author

Dr. Michael West

Dr. Michael West

Dr. West is an endocrinologist in private practice in Washington, DC. He completed fellowship training in Endocrinology and Metabolism at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. Dr. West opened The Washington Endocrine Clinic, PLLC in 2009. He can be contacted at doctorwestindc@gmail.com.

   

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