Canadian Medical Association. Multipart series on medical Professionalism. 2012. Cadadian Medical Association Journal

Roger Collier
Submitted: January, 2012

Part I: The “good doctor” discussion
–introduction to the series
Part II: What is it?
— What does professionalism really mean in a medical context? Are the standard definitions too broad to be useful? Are there core elements that all physicians agree upon? Are those core elements static or dynamic? Are they culturally specific?
Part III: The historical contract
— Medicine is one of the world’s oldest professions. But when did its practitioners first attempt to conceptualize their ideal role in society? How has that concept changed over the centuries?
Part IV: Can it be taught?
— Ethics used to be a hot topic in academic medicine, but then debate shifted to professionalism. Why? And what good is coming from all these papers about doctors written by doctors for doctors?
Part V: Social media outreach
–Patients can visit any number of websites and provide anonymous ratings of their doctors. Do doctors receive this feedback gracefully and make attempts to improve their practices? Are the comments usually accurate? How do doctors improve their online reputations?
Part VI: Social media mishaps (
—Recommendations from “Don’t identify patients. Don’t rant about colleagues. Don’t let your fingers type what your mouth wouldn’t dare say. ‘I have what I call the elevator test. If they wouldn’t say it in a crowded hospital elevator, they shouldn’t write it on a social network.’”
Part VII: Logging on to tell your doctor off
—discuss physician management of on-line presence.
Part VIII: Assessing physician behavior
— How do you measure a physician’s level of professionalism? Do the opinions of patients count, or only those of colleagues? Are there more objective means of measuring physician accountability? Do medical licensing bodies even attempt to assess professionalism?
Part IX: Payment models & physician behavior
— How a person is paid at work can dramatically affect their behaviour at work. Are doctors any different? Do doctors in a fee-for-service system behave differently than those in a pay-for-performance system? Is there a system that best aligns the interests of patients with physician remuneration?
Part X: The view from outside medicine.
— Explores importance of profession working to hold selves to a high standard to ensure the public’s trust. This includes self-regulation which includes the provision of high quality and up to date medical care.
Part XI: Professionalism: the importance of trust.!po=50.0000
— Discusses commercialism in medicine Physicians and physician oganizations need to perform actions to reassure the public that doctors have the best interests of patients at heart.
Part X11: Professionalism: The privilege and burden of self-regulation
–Discussed challenge and importance of self-regulation in today’s complex world
Nice overview, may inspire similar series as blog post, or newsletter publication

Resource Type:
  • Commentaries & Blogs
  • Overview
  • Definitions & Frameworks
  • Social Contract
  • Medical Ethics
  • Commoditization