About The Canswer Man:

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A simple man with a simple plan: Kick the Big "C" with a cocktail of family/friend love, unapologetic laughter and a dash of Nat-titude.  And if I'm lucky, maybe even one of my odd-servations will help with YOUR situation.

Please join me on my selfish/selfless journey --- to infinity, and beyond!

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Chair-side Manner

Chair-side Manner

I’ve talked a lot about the quality and integrity of my medical team.  And specifically, the leadership and unique personality of our chief Oncologist (we’ll call him Dr. S.).

It’s appropriate to sidebar here for a brief lesson in Yiddish; that dead language whose smattering of colorful words have worked their way into English; and when correctly applied, describe a situation like no others.  Often a Yiddish word doesn’t even need explanation – it just sounds like what it is characterizing.  Putz = a jerk.  And when said with the right amount of derogatory inflection encapsulates the usage.

Today’s Yiddish word of the day is Mensch: (pronounced like bench).  Webster’s dictionary defines a mensch as: a person of integrity and honor.

When dealing with or seeking out a top-shelf healthcare provider (HCP), much of the emphasis is focused on their intelligence, educational pedigree/institute, years of experience and collection of parchment hanging on the office wall.  But little if anything is known of their “bedside” manner until it’s almost too late.

As has been widely chronicled within the context of this blog (and supported by mountains of empirical data), having a good attitude is a significant contributor to a successful outcome.  That perspective is most often attributed to the patient’s participation, but the HCP is also a factor in that formula.  Though cancer treatment doesn’t usually employ a bed, the “bed” here is what I loving refer to as the Magic Chemo Chair.  Dr. S. is the King of Chair-side manner.

He spends a great deal of time getting to know the patient, the patient’s extended family, answering any and all questions (and there are a lot), talking to you at the level you can understand (not too simplistic and not too “I’m smarter than you are”), and making you feel like you are the only person in his practice.  He is interested and interesting.  If you were to look-up the word mensch in the dictionary, you would see a picture of Dr. S’s smiling, kind and compassionate face there as the perfect example.  Dr. S. is a medical genius, but just as important (to me at least) Dr. S. is a mensch.



Twist of Fate

Twist of Fate