Study: Personal Behavior of Surgeons Affects Patients, Increases Cost

Study: Personal Behavior of Surgeons Affects Patients, Increases CostHow surgeons behave in the operating room has a connection to not only the patients' health, but also has an influential role in determining the cost of healthcare, the prevalence of medical errors and patient satisfaction, a recent study published in The Archives of Surgery found, HealthDay reports.

According to the news source, the report stated that surgeons who are "civil" will better be able to help their patients and keep costs low.

"Often, surgeons get hired on the basis of their knowledge, training and technical accomplishments," Dr. Andrew S. Klein, lead author of the study and director of the Cedars-Sinai Comprehensive Transplant Center said in a statement. "But operating rooms are social environments where everyone must work together for the patient's benefit. When a surgeon, who is in the position of power, is rude and belittles the rest of the staff, it affects everything."

Klein and his co-author Pier M. Forni alluded to several studies that demonstrated a link between rudeness of surgeons and harmful affects on the quality of care given to the patient. One study showed a correlation between civility during surgery and fewer deaths and complications after the operation in 300 cases, the media outlet stated.

Further research found that 75 percent of hospital pharmacists and nurses actively avoid working with doctors who they believe may be rude or difficult, even when a question about a patient's health is raised, leading to lower quality care of patients of rude doctors.

Nurses, specifically, are a crucial part of post-operation recovery, the report stated, according to HealthDay, and hospitals that record a high turnover rate of nurses tend to report more medical errors. Given that a separate study found that two-thirds of nurses claim that doctors verbally abuse them once every three months, lower patient satisfaction can be linked back to nurse turnover rates, and further, to unpleasant behavior from doctors.

The report ended by stating that surgeons must treat their staff civilly while conducting an operation, and, while not performing surgery, must be an example of leadership, which will allow them to be respected and to create loyalty towards the profession that will result in better patient care.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, surgeons work long, irregular hours that can contribute to stress and irritability, which Dr. Andrew Klein found can significantly affect a patient's health, HealthDay reports.