Sahil Sharma

To be a successful Psychiatrist what kind of work values do I need to have?

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by Sahil Sharma
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RE: To be a successful Psychiatrist what kind of work values do I need to have?

Indumathi  Selvaraj
Indumathi Selvaraj
Verified Career Expert
Applied Psychologist And Career Counselor
  • Bangalore


Thank you for reaching Mera

Work Values? I want you to first analyse what is work values according to you. Yes it is required that one possess a work value to be a Good, Competent Psychiatrist?

In my view the folllowing qualities are Key:

1 Good Listening and Observation Skills

2. Empathy

3. Willingness to spens time educating patient and Family about diagnosis and recommended treatments

4. Breadth of Knowledge

5. Depth of Knowledge

6. Humililty - Professional and Personal

The first three of the above qualities need no explanation. Most people know what they mean. These three make any person a good human beign substitute willingness to spend time educating patient and families with willingness to spend time with friends and family. It is addition of the next three that makes a good human beign into a good competent psychiatrist.

Breadth of Knowledge -

There is considerable overlapping symptoms between psychiatric diagnoses within and across diagnostic categories. For example, distractibility could be a sign of ADHD, a developmental disorder, hypomania, mania, depression, psychosis, substance abuse, multiple anxiety disorders, certain personality disorders, or could exist without a person having any Psychiatric disorder at all. A Psychiatrist with a breadth of knowledge even when instinctively knowing what might be going on with a patient will consider an adequatelyl broad range diagnostic possibilities before settling on one.

The same appllies to treatments. Breadth of knowledge means the doctor will have a variety of treatment solutions such as Medications, Psychotherapy, referrals. in his bag and will use different ones for different patients depending upon their illnesses. He won't remind you of the saying. "When you all you have is a hammer, everything looks lilke a nail"

Depth of Knowledge -

By depth of knowledge, I mean that with regards to conditions he chooses to treat himself (rather than refer out) a competent Psychiatrist will know almost all clinically relevant stuff there is to know. If he doesn't know, he will be willing to find out. For Example, such as Psychiatrist will have an idea not only about the potential benefits and risks but also about the limits of treatment with medications, psychotherapy alternatives medicine and lifestyle adjustment in the treatment of various conditions he treats. He would know when fewer treatments or no treatment would be indicated.

Humilty -

A Professionally humble psychiatrist owuld have constant awareness that Psychiatric diagnosis is still a very subjective enterprise. i.e there is no definitive diagnostic blood or imaging (CT scan, MRI etc) test that can confirm a diagnosis. This awareness would shape his behaviour in the form of a belief that no matter how confident he is of his initial diagnosis of a patient until he has followed the patient thrugh for some period of time the diagnosis will be provisional and subject to change based on new data. A Professionally humble psychiatrist would be willing to consider the possiblity that many common treatment dont really suit a particular patient.

Personal Humility on the part of this psychiatrist would be reflected in how he approacches patient with the constant awareness that the patient even in the worst phases of mental illness is an equal to him as a human beign but for an accident of birth in a family with different genetic risks and different social, economic or cultural background, he could very well be suffering from any of the illnesses that afflict his patients.

Hope this helps and answers your question

All the best for your career growth to see you as a Successful Psychiatrist!

RE: To be a successful Psychiatrist what kind of work values do I need to have?

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