Saturday, March 23, 2013

Motivation 3.0 and doctors

Yesterday, I introduced the book “Drive”, in which the author claims that internal motivation is derived from three elements. These are autonomy, mastery, and purpose.

Book Review - Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us

Then, I noticed that there is an occupation which equips all of the three elements.

What is it? It is mine, a doctor.

The work of doctors is very autonomous. In Japan even residents soon after acquiring doctor license are responsible for the health of their patients. They make decision of treatment by themselves. The boss cannot interrupt the judgment of the doctor in charge in clinical practice. (Of course, we often discuss the strategy of treatment in a clinical conference regularly.) I remember that I was surprised at the influence of my order when I began to work at a hospital for the first time.

And, mastery of clinical medicine has been a way of life forever. We cannot control human life at all. Medicine has a history of thousand years. Nonetheless medical science is now developing, never completed. I guess almost all doctors are fond to learn more and more. A person without desire for improvement of his own knowledge and skills of medical science should not be a doctor.

Purpose of medicine is quite evident. Improving human life is worthy without doubt. But the purpose is not measured easily. There is a dilemma between mortality and quality of life. We have to find our own goals with patients together. The work is ethical and philosophical.

Then, the doctor is a work of motivation 3.0, isn't it?

I think I am blessed and happy to live as a doctor.
However, the way of doctors is also changing.

The cost for health care is increasing in almost all countries. Optimizing medical care system is needed. But there is a trap in it. It is possible that management of medical practice will introduce doctors to motivation 2.0. System with rewards and penalty can reduce the motivation of doctors.

In Japan, traditional philosophy of the doctor was altruism. Many doctors worked extremely hard for low amount of rewards. Some sacrificed themselves due to exhaustion. Instead, Doctors were fully respected by the citizens.
The current trend is changing. Patients are not satisfied to medical care in Japan. Sense of the values of modern doctors is various.

Are Good old days lost? Or new do we need new philosophy? I feel motivation 3.0 very near to me in this issue.

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