On the attitude towards failure and how important empathy is in building a trusting doctor-patient relationship

For anything to work – whether it’s a partnership, a business, a doctor-patient relationship, in our case, there are a few rules that both parties need to keep in mind.
Dr. Viorel Dejeu and Dr. Dănuț Dejeu have always wanted the Doctor Dejeu team – surgeons, psychologists, nutritionists, office managers – to adopt the right attitude towards failure and difficult situations: “We learn by failing. We don’t know where we got this idea that we have to get it right the first time, and if it doesn’t happen, we consider it a failure.”
And in order to make everything clear in this regard, the team agreed to never forget the following:

  • We don’t scold anyone;
  • We don’t look down on anyone;
  • Rather than criticize, you should help;
  • Rather than ‘putting someone on the spot’, you’d rather answer their question;
  • When you talk to a patient, you have to be there just for them, whether that’s one minute, ten minutes or however many;
  • Did the patient forget what you said? Repeat;
  • Whatever negligence a patient does, empathy and compassion are defining;
  • To evil, we answer with good!

“Our attitude is to say what was done wrong, but with the aim of helping the patient to progress”

Patients are ordinary people who make mistakes – sometimes they follow only some instructions, sometimes none. And when they come face to face with the doctor they can be vulnerable. This is where the doctor’s understanding and, above all, his empathy come in.

Dr. Viorel Dejeu: “You can only be sympathetic to a person’s weaknesses and shortcomings if you are aware of your own. After all, that’s what empathy is, to be able to sit with someone as they are, to understand them and to be able to encourage them. Criticizing can be done by anyone, there’s nothing superior about it.
Our attitude is to say what was done wrong, but with the aim of helping the patient to progress. We speak each other’s language, with love and kindness. There was a time when the kind of medicine was practiced where doctors behaved with patients as if they were children in kindergarten. All that was missing was a linear to slap their fingers when they got it wrong. Hence some of the ‘fear of the doctor’. When you make yourself vulnerable, you can also be easily hurt or scared. We know this and strive to make patients feel like they are among friends. No hyphoses, no high tones, no vedetisms. And putting someone’s life in our hands is the greatest responsibility we have.”


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