Have we lost the importance of touch?

Touch can show gentleness and compassion, or it can show carelessness or incompetence.
Many of our patients feel that being touched is important to getting better.
Gentle touching when examining an injured area, inspecting an irritated and angry skin patch or just comforting a person who hasn’t had an ideal medical diagnosis has become a lost skill?
Do you greet your patients or customers with the occasional handshake?

Medicine in all its forms was once all about touching, and that was welcomed by patients.
It was an integral part to holistic care.

Now, in an era of electronics, where we spend an ever-increasing amount of time staring at a computer screen, engagement and physical connection is more important than ever in my view.

Touch promotes trust, not just talking, dispensing and dismissing.
Many of our patients with a chronic illness spend decades, literally, in dozens of medical hands.
Many don’t like being poked, prodded and “manhandled”, but they all appreciate gentle touching care.

Any medical intervention often starts with a fear of not knowing how a physician, nurse and medical technician will treat us…..…..we are often in pain and already feeling anxious and vulnerable.

Touch is a two-way conversation.
Maintaining dignity is essential.

Healthcare has become business-like. We are pressured to do more, sell more, listen less and give better value at a lower cost.
We need to re-learn how to loosen up a bit!
In theory, our patients expect to be consistently treated with kind, compassionate care.
Is that happening in your practice?

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