Many doctors have always been known to have very illegble handwritings which are usually so difficult to decipher. Most times, only someone in a medical profession is able to decode doctors’ written statements or prescriptions and this has always left many wondering.
According to statistics, doctors’ handwritings constitute a share in the¬†percentage of deaths in the hospital. It is estimated that about 30,000 people die each year, due to doctors’ handwriting. It is said to be worse in the United States in which up to 100,000 people die for the same reason per year.
Doctors wouldn’t definitely intentionally¬†want to obscure their writings considering the number of deaths that result from such “errors”. By the way, who would ever want his patients dead?
A doctor owes his illegible handwriting to particularly 3 reasons.
Training in Medical Schools.
Most doctors start out their medical training with fine handwritings. Things however take a turn in the course of their journey through medical school as they have to acquire get right every bit of information. In the lecture halls, they follow up every tiny dot of what the lecturers say so as not to miss any of it. In exams, there are lots of questions to answer with such a limited time. This means that they have to write at such a high speed so as to meet up with time. All these, coupled with the voluminous workload they have to study, they eventually lose their once beautiful handwritings. It should however be noted that these trainings are meant to keep up these upcoming doctors with the etics of treating every life with importance and urgency and so, they must learn to utilize their times well.
Large number of Patients to attend to.
A doctor may “escape” medical school still retaining his good handwriting. But how about when he really starts working? He is left with unusually¬†large number of patients to attend to as a single doctor. Thus, a doctor really doesn’t have that luxury of time to pay much details to his handwriting, as while attending to one, there are still hundreds outside waiting.
Level of Intelligence.
It is a common theory that intelligent people do write fast. Though, it doesn’t say anyone who writes fast is intelligent. However, it is proposed that doctors have such a level of intelligence so high that when they write, their hands cannot keep up with it. In other words, the brain works faster than the hands. Well, it is really no doubt doctors are intelligent.
Non-stop writing in the medical field.
According to Dr. Celine Thum, MD, medical director at ParaDocs Worldwide, “In the medical field, if it‚Äôs not documented, it didn‚Äôt happen.‚ÄĚ¬†In other words, every detail no matter how insignificant, must be written. Anything left out could cost a patient’s life.
This leaves the medical profession as one of the highest writing jobs. Together with the large volume of things to document, ranging from patients ‘bio-data, to discharge summaries, patients’ cards, drug charts, referral forms, x-ray slips, pathology slips, test results and many more, eventually they lose their dexterity writing legibly.
It should however be noted that not all doctors out there have such poor handwriting as there are still those with beautiful handwritings you’d love to behold all your days.
Well, the medical profession is now moving electronic to curb the issue of bad handwritings lessen casualties from those errors, and also handle the large volume of hospitals’ database.
Some hospitals now send prescriptions directly to the pharmacists from the doctor’s desk electronically, thus making things easier and faster.
Despite all of these, as no profession is free of its own “errors”, we still can’t but really say, the medical profession has indeed being a blessing to humanity.
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