How the Culture of Medicine Kills Doctors and Patients
Are you getting the medical care you hoped for? Perhaps you really like your doctor and feel listened to and well treated. Or maybe you’re frustrated with the lack of coordinated medical care, unconscious bias, and medical systems that don’t keep patients well-being at the center of their decisions. Most people agree that the US health care system is broken, but there is also a less talked about problem to address— “physician culture.” My guest, Dr. Robert Pearl, says, “Doctors are not heroes or villains. They produce remarkable successes and abysmal failures.” We’ll discuss what doctors do well, and how some miss the mark on compassionate, science based, high quality, and effective medicine for all.
**Listen now to About Health on KPFA.org—94.1FM, (7/12/21)**
ROBERT PEARL, M.D. is the former CEO of The Permanente Medical Group (1999-2017), the nation’s largest medical group, and former president of The Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group (2009-2017). In these roles he led 10,000 physicians, 38,000 staff and was responsible for the nationally recognized medical care of 5 million Kaiser Permanente members. Named one of Modern Healthcare’s 50 most influential physician leaders, he is an advocate for the power of integrated, prepaid, technologically advanced and physician-led healthcare delivery. He serves as a clinical professor of plastic surgery at Stanford University School of Medicine and is on the faculty of the Stanford Graduate School of Business, where he teaches courses on strategy and leadership, and lectures on information technology and health care policy. Board certified in plastic and reconstructive surgery, Dr. Pearl received his medical degree from the Yale University School of Medicine, followed by a residency in plastic and reconstructive surgery at Stanford University.
He is the author of “Mistreated: Why We think We’re Getting Good Healthcare—And Why We’re Usually Wrong,” and his most recent book is, Uncaring: How the Culture of Medicine Kills Doctors and Patients. All proceeds from the book go to Doctors Without Borders.
Dr. Pearl hosts the podcasts Fixing Healthcare and Coronavirus: The Truth and he publishes a newsletter, Monthly Musings on American Healthcare. He has published more than 100 articles in medical journals and contributed to numerous books. From 2012 to 2017, Dr. Pearl served as chairman of the Council of Accountable Physician Practices (CAPP), which includes the nation’s largest and best multispecialty medical groups, and participated in the Bipartisan Congressional Task Force on Delivery System Reform and Health IT in Washington, D.C. Connect with Dr. Robert Pearl on Twitter @RobertPearlMD, LinkedIn, and at his website robertpearlmd.com.