Would patients and families benefit from a Doctor Body Cam? Linked from www.DoctorBodyCam.com, this article explores innovations providing accountability for ethical communication surrounding major healthcare decisions. One of the greatest challenges physicians face is living up to their own ideals, let alone others’ expectations, for high-stakes doctor-patient/family communication, especially at the end of life. From emotional strains to time limitations, a multiplicity of factors obfuscates the pursuit of excellence in this vital endeavor. Evidence suggests that, like nearly every other sector of healthcare and society, African American patients and families are most likely to get the short end of the physician communication stick. Drawing on the current literature, this piece makes a compelling case for the inclusion of third-party specialists to take some of the communication load off of overworked physicians in end-of-life discussions and earlier difficult healthcare issues. A more team-oriented approach to the interdisciplinary art of patient/family-provider health communication surrounding complex issues and treatment decisions may be a win-win for everyone involved.



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