Comment: Putting patients first

Our cover feature in this issue is about the role of patients’ comments on the care and services they receive.

Everyone encounters annoying behaviour every day. The bored look on the face of a member of staff at the checkout. The GP receptionist who asks personal questions about your condition in an open plan area. The bus driver who lurches to a stop, throwing you off balance.

In a clinical setting, where illness and medical conditions are routine, a culture can develop that loses sight of how the patient feels about being poked and prodded.

But it takes very little to think about putting the patient first.

A smiling face on the reception desk or friendly voice at the end of the phone costs nothing. Treating patients with respect – as advocated by the ‘Hello my name is’ campaign – is key.

Even when things are getting tough, as they are for many members at the moment, it’s important to hang on to what physios do best: bringing the human touch to caring.

Lynn Eaton managing editor Frontline and head of CSP member communications

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