Physicians and Journalism: Responsibly Meeting the Challenge

An excellent discussion of the importance of physicians’ mindfulness. Our words and actions matter, often more than we know, in and out of the exam room. It is the contract of responsibility that we signed when we took the oath of caring.

Dr. Kevin Campbell, MD

As a physician journalist I find myself in a very fortunate and quite unique position—I am able to reach vast numbers of Americans on a daily basis and provide them with credible (and hopefully impactful) news on health and wellness. Medical journalism is similar to the practice of medicine in that we must put the PATIENT first. Just as physicians provide patients with information they need to better understand their disease state and treatment options in a clinical interaction, physician journalists must carefully choose their words when on camera or quoted in print. In a clinical situation, there is time for questions and two-way interaction between doctor and patient. In contrast, medical reporting in broadcast media is a very different situation–there is no opportunity for patient interaction and what is said MUST be something that will stimulate further conversation between viewers and their OWN private physicians. Statements must be clear…

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1 thought on “Physicians and Journalism: Responsibly Meeting the Challenge

  1. It does indeed matter. That is why we spend hours practicing for the delivery of bad news and searching for the right patient centered information. Thinking long and hard tonight about how to best share with a young 50yo patient that they have neuroendocrine pancreatic cancer…

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