Melbourne University has launched a plan to improve the bedside manners of would-be doctors. For this plan to come into effect, the medical students will be "embedded" with patients suffering from a chronic illness such as diabetes or arthritis for two years.
This program will be compulsory for the students and is identical to a program at Harvard Medical School in the US. "I think it would be ideal to have students following patients over a year at least, perhaps two," said Professor Geoff McColl, clinical dean at Melbourne University. "That way they will see seasons of their illness and their interaction with health care."
This plan wants to make doctors more empathetic to the patients. "There's no question that health outcomes are improved if two-way communication is improved," Professor McColl said.