Friday, 18 May 2012

Life Impact Wheel

Wouldn't it be interesting (and possibly scary!) to know what the differences are between the patients perception of their their situation and the doctor's perception of it?
Doctors may be acutely aware of the health aspect of my life, but I wonder how much they appreciate the impact that has on everything else - finances, relationships, career, hobbies and friends...

Now I know doctors are human, and may well have been ill them  selves, or had close family members or friends suffer illness. At medical school I knew that your health impacted the rest of your life, but I didn't comprehend the significant of the impact of what doctors consider quite minor conditions. Neither did I appreciate it in the context of long-term conditions.

Making each party aware of what concerns the other could really help improve communication and team work between patient and doctor. Using a Life Impact Wheel could be a clear way to illustrate that . . .
Get both the doctor and patient to fill it in, marking on a scale from 1 - 10 the  impact the illness is having on various aspects of their life (work, happiness, social life, relationships etc.), and any discrepancies should be easy to see. The scale of the whole problem is also easy to see with this model - something that patients can find hard to convey to doctors.

It only takes a sheet of paper (or maybe a fancy app one day!) . . . but seeing the disease in the wider context of someone's life could make a significant difference. I'm not saying it will generate a cure, but it might help the doctor understand the disease and non-clinical ways in which they could help (or signpost to). Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

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