One of the ways that corporations have been successful in replacing physicians with lesser-trained medical practitioners is by creating a sense of equivalence so that patients think that the care they will receive is “the same.” For example, both physicians and nurse practitioners and physician assistants wear white coats, have similar-appearing badges, and may be referred to as “doctor” even if that doctorate is not a medical degree.
Not only do these corporations elevate the role of nonphysicians, they also work to bring down the level of physicians. On many health system websites, physicians are listed as mere “providers.” The once-named “doctor’s lounge” is now the provider’s lounge. And now, some institutions have even taken aim at “Doctor’s Day,” hijacking the one day devoted to showing appreciation for physicians and turning the focus instead on the healthcare ‘team’.
Today, Dr. Marsha Haley, a radiation oncologist, joins us to discuss an article that she wrote for the Buck’s County Courier Times about the appropriation of ‘Doctor’s Day’.
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