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Saturday, May 4, 2019

Another "Omics" in the health care space

My wife just passed along this Washington Post article to me.
"Doctors who are kind have healthier patients who heal faster, according to new book"
I bought and downloaded the book. Thanks, Cheryl. Add another branch to the "Omics," 'eh?

Stay tuned.

From the Amazon blurb:
A 34-year-old man fighting for his life in the Intensive Care Unit is on an artificial respirator for over a month. Could it be that his chance of getting off the respirator is not how much his nurses know, but rather how much they care?

A 75-year-old woman is heroically saved by a major trauma center only to be discharged and fatally struck by a car while walking home from the hospital. Could a lack of compassion from the hospital staff have been a factor in her death?

Compelling new research shows that health care is in the midst of a compassion crisis.
But the pivotal question is this: Does compassion really matter?

In Compassionomics: The Revolutionary Scientific Evidence that Caring Makes a Difference, physician scientists Stephen Trzeciak and Anthony Mazzarelli uncover the eye-opening data that compassion could be a wonder drug for the 21st century.

Now, for the first time ever, a rigorous review of the science - coupled with captivating stories from the front lines of medicine - demonstrates that human connection in health care matters in astonishing ways. Never before has all the evidence been synthesized together in one place.

You will see compelling evidence that:

  • Compassion has vast benefits for patients across a wide variety of conditions
  • Missed opportunities for compassion can have devastating health effects
  • Compassion can help reverse the cost crisis in health care
  • Compassion can be an antidote for burnout among health care providers
  • 40 seconds of compassion can save a life
After seeing all the evidence, the answer is crystal clear: Compassion not only meaningful but measurable ways.
We shall see. From the Foreword by Senator Cory Booker:
We are often led to believe that sentiments like compassion, love and kindness are expressions of weakness rather than signs of strength. And we are often all too ready to give in to the false belief that meanness somehow equates to toughness and that empathy is empty of power... [Kindle location 168]
"...meanness somehow equates to toughness..." Remind you of anyone of late? Hmmm...

I look forward to studying this book. I have to think that one reason I sailed through my SAVR px last August was the empathic, compassionate care of my cardiac surgeon and his team.

I left a comment under the WaPo article.
There is good scientific evidence that prosocial behaviors--up to and including the altruistic (sorry, Ayn Rand)--have evolutionary "adaptive utility." See, e.g., Tomasello's "A Natural History of Human Morality." Which simply makes sense when you fully reflect on it. "Nature may be red in tooth and claw, but it is not merely so." - Sam Harris. 

I just bought the book and will report on it at ASAP.

The author of the WaPo article has a heavy duty Sheet and a new book out.

"The science of happiness?" There's that word "science" again. More stuff to study and evaluate.


"Physicists, philosophers debate whether research can ever solve certain mysteries of the universe—and the human mind"
Well, duhhh.. Seriously? Scientific American, no less. My favorite Hastie & Dawes quote: "Two Cheers for Uncertainty."

C'mon, think about it.

More to come...

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