Thursday, January 28, 2010

First do no harm


What is implicit in this simple precept of medicine?

An awesome power. The power to do harm.

Who gives you this power?

The patient give you the power. A patient will come to you at his moment of greatest dread , hand you a knife an say, “Doctor, cut me open.”


Because they trust you. They trusts you the way a child trusts. They trusts you to do no harm.

The sad fact is , human beings are not worthy of trust. It is human nature to lie, take shortcuts, to lose your nerve, get tired, make mistakes. No rational patient would put his trust in a human being and were not gonna let him. It is our mission here to rigorously and ruthlessly train the humanity out of you and make you into something better. Were gonna make doctor out of you.