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There’s a subculture in healthcare that seems to resent all expressions of delight that the weekend is coming. This is probably because so many of us don’t have traditional weekends. We work – maybe just a “regular” day, maybe 48 hours straight. We may or may not earn any extra money for this time, and we may or may not get a day off during the week as our consolation prize for weekend or holiday duty. So when the world is abuzz with weekend joy, some healthcare professionals are “celebrating” like this:
- By Marjorie Stiegler on February 22, 2016 in Health Policy, Leadership, Medical Education, Social MediaKeep Reading
“The reason I do this show on the radio is so that other people can benefit from what I’m saying. I don’t have a fix for you, but I’m glad you called, so that other women out there listening to this can avoid the decisions and mistakes you made.”
I believe that healthcare leaders and medical experts have a professional obligation to be present on the internet, so that they can…
- By Marjorie Stiegler on February 8, 2016 in Focusing Illusion, Framing, Ladder of Inference, ResilienceKeep Reading
Why do we think the grass is always greener?
This nearly irresistible human experience is rooted in the focusing illusion.
The focusing illusion describes how humans make judgments. Generally, we focus on a subset of data instead of all possible data (this may be due to priming or anchoring on a particular subset of data, as happens in marketing, or could be due to the fact that most people’s working memory capacity can only hold about 3-5 data points at a time). We then give that data more weight than it otherwise deserves. In particular…
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Did you buy a Powerball Lottery ticket? With a jackpot of 1.4 billion dollars for tomorrow’s Powerball Lottery drawing, record numbers of people are frenetically purchasing record numbers of tickets. For some, it is mere entertainment – an insignificant amount of income spent on an intangible pleasure, not much different from reading a novel. For others, it represents a bad investment and a completely irrational allocation of much-needed money. Evolution is not helping us. Here are a few of the hard-wired cognitive tendencies that keep the lottery alive and well:
- By Marjorie Stiegler on December 31, 2015 in Commission Bias, Hindsight Bias, Medical Decision MakingKeep Reading
A toddler falls face-first onto an iron table, bleeding profusely. Mom takes the baby to the emergency room. After her child was evaluated, it was determined that no serious injury was sustained, no further intervention was needed, and the toddler was discharged home with some wound care instructions and a popsicle. When the mother subsequently received a bill from the ER, she remarked, “That was one pricey popsicle.”
But deciding to “do nothing” IS doing something – something that requires a high level of medical expertise…
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It is said that the best defense is a good offense.
This is certainly true when it comes to online reputation for doctors and healthcare organizations.
Just one unfavorable headline or review can do tremendous damage, even when it is totally false. More bad news – you probably cannot get those reviews removed. Just about anyone can say just about anything about you and your group online. So-called “reputation repair” services cost thousands of dollars (sometimes tens of thousands!) every month to mitigate these serious problems. But a small investment of your own time can prevent nightmares like this…
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Hostility among healthcare professionals seems to be escalating among physicians and nurses alike about pretty much everyone else in the hospital. Emergency medicine physicians are “GTNs” – glorified triage nurses. (Wait – are we insulting ER dos or triage nurses here?) Surgeons are “often wrong, but never in doubt!” Some guy in an elevator told me that the “ABCs” for anesthesiologists – referring to the life support mantra of “Airway, Breathing, Circulation” – are “Airway, Bagel, Coffee”. And who knows the difference between an optometrist, optician, and ophthalmologist anyway? The ICU nurses’ station displayed a cartoon portraying medical residents as babies dressed in diapers, sucking on pacifiers, their stethoscopes training behind them on the floor like a security blanket. I’m not sure why these insults are so pervasively embraced and tolerated in healthcare culture, but it is disheartening…