Progressive Doctor Recommends Medical Community Focus Less On Sickness
Dr. Ray Pendyke has been practicing medicine as a general practitioner for three years. During that time he has been developing his medical care philosophy. Harris is also a progressive Christian. He regularly listens to podcasts of young leaders who question the very basics of Christianity and suggest the Church talk less about sin and more about nice things that people want to hear. This has inspired his views his own profession.
"I'm not trying to destroy the medical community," says Pendyke. "I'm just looking at where we are and wondering if it is working. The healthcare industry is in a crisis. We all know that. But how can we turn it around? I think some things I hear coming out of my favorite Christian podcasts can also apply to my professional field. For instance, maybe it is time we stop focusing so much on sickness and diseases and start talking more about healthy stuff. There are many old school doctors out there. When a patient comes in, they will spend the first part of the conversation talking about how sick the person is, and what caused the disease. Hellooo... they know they are sick. Harping on that is not going to help them. People don't come to the doctor to find out what is wrong with them. Tell them the good stuff. Tell them that they have great potential. I'd like to think it is what Carey Nieuwhof would say if he were a doctor."
This approach has as much of a chance of working in the doctor's office as it does in the pulpit. The reaction among patients is split. We talked to two women in Dr. Pendyke's waiting room.
"When I go to the doctor, I want him to tell me the truth, no matter how bad it is," says Lisa, who is concerned she may have cancer. "I may know I am sick, but I may not know why. If he doesn't talk to me about the why of the sickness, I may be right back in the same place later on. I want to understand what is going on, not just talk about how wonderful life is when I'm not sick."
Mary, who is just in for an annual checkup has a different take. "No... I can go anywhere and hear about my medical condition. What I want is to hear about how sickness does not define me, and how I can still do whatever I want to do. Sickness is depressing. The last thing I want to do when I'm sick is have a depressing conversation. Talk to me about the birds and the trees. Tell me how clear the lake water is."
Dr. Pendyke is sad that he may lose some patients. On the other hand, he doesn't need that kind of negativity in his life.