Deumanizzazione dei pazienti nei contesti medici
In: Minority Reports. Cultural Disability Studies, 2020
In this work we have shown that healthcare professionals tend to assign a lower human status to patients, who are perceived as less characterized than physicians and nurses by the distinctive traits of humanity (e.g., self-control, rationality). In addition, we reviewed data showing that, among healthcare professionals, patient dehumanization is associated with lower levels of burnout and higher levels of work engagement. Furthermore, clinical problem solving seems to be incompatible with understanding patients’ mental states (empathy). We discussed interventions that can reduce stress and, thus, patient dehumanization, in medical contexts. Strategies can be suggested allowing physicians to engage in both empathic relations and the solution of clinical cases. Lastly, this contribution analyses healthcare disparities when doctor and patient belong to different ethnic groups.