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             18 August, 2022

Category:  Articles » Health & Fitness » Medicine


Should Your Boss Be Your Personal Doctor?

         Views: 1544
2007-08-08 17:13:59     
Article by John V Burke

Working for a doctor could be seen as a perk in terms of your personal healthcare. After all, nobody likes going in for a check-up, so the more convenient the terms, the better. Also, it's comforting to have insider knowledge of a skilled physician whom you can trust.

Not so fast! There can be unforeseen consequences in having your boss as your doctor. First of all, he's also your employer, and making him privy to personal information could make your job situation more awkward. No boss should have intimate details about their employees.

Doctors are judgmental by nature. It's how they function. You don't want that sort of intense focus on anything but your job performance. As a patient, you deserve objective attention with no fear of repercussions.

I have a friend who is a type-2 diabetic, and her doctor/boss kids her in a joking manner whenever she eats something she's not supposed to around the office. Granted, it's helpful for her to realize the necessity of eating right, but she's on pins and needles in the workplace. I'm very skeptical of this type of arrangement, and it also leads me to ponder another question: should doctors practice what they preach?

There is a doctor in our office who is severely overweight. Recently he was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. This afternoon we all went out to lunch, and he ordered fried chicken and mashed potatoes, a dessert of apple pie and ironically, a diet coke.

Nobody said a word. Not the other doctor who was there, or the two nurses, or the other staff members. We were all painfully aware of the negative effects of this nationwide epidemic, and the fact that this doctor was committing a slow form of suicide to eat that lunch.

I felt torn because he is a friend of mine, and I make it a policy of being truthful with friends. However, I also work for him, and there is a level of protocol I have always followed in the workplace. We all occasionally eat fast food, or drink too much, or otherwise show bad judgment. As medical professionals, the consequences of our behavior is a given and doesn't need to be discussed.

But isn't it wrong for a doctor to not generally live a healthy lifestyle? Should a doctor even be overweight in the first place? Shouldn't they lead by example?

My doctor friend has diagnosed countless diabetics, and he knows firsthand how many people fail to change their bad eating habits. He now knows by experience what they're going through, and instead of letting it inform his behavior, it seems to me that he is choosing to act like he is above it. Doesn't that degrade the kind of medicine he practices?

If this keeps up, and he doesn't stop eating junk, I am seriously considering staging some kind of intervention. I will not sit idly by and watch him ruin his health. That would be against the ethics of our chosen profession.

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