Professional Conduct

Categories of Professionalism:

  1. Ability: achieving and maintaining knowledge and training
  2. Altruism: putting patient needs first
  3. Adherence: committing to a code of behavior and ethics
  4. Advocacy: working with colleagues for the greater good
  5. Accountability: committing to internal standards and assessment

What does this mean to me?

Dress: You should dress neatly and comfortably. Men should wear a dress shirt and tie, women should wear a skirt or dress pants. All should wear a clean white coat.

Identification: Your badge should be worn at all times. Ensure that patients, families, and staff know your role as an upper level student. Nurses must be aware that your orders need to be co-signed. Patients need to understand that your position is supervised by an upper level resident and attending.

Responsibility: Do not assume someone else will complete a needed task for your patient – you are it now.

Recognize limitations: Do not hesitate to get help. Your job is not to impress others with your bravery – your job is to provide optimal care to your patients.

Become an adult learner: During the first three years of medical school, learning was often clouded by the need to achieve high grades. As a resident and physician, your focus will shift to learning because you need to in order to provide optimal care to your patients. It is your professional responsibility to think of questions, look up answers, and read about topics that arise from the case of individual patients.

Communication: Talk with staff, nurses, consultants, primary providers, patients and families. Be open, kind and courteous.

Rounds Decorum: It is not appropriate to eat/drink/carry coffee during work rounds that include walks through patient care areas and patient rooms. Individual patients should not be discussed in public areas such as elevators and halls. Patients on rounds should be addressed by proper names, including patients who are delirious or have cognitive impairment. Derogatory comments about nonspecific patients or care issues (“diuresis” of the service) also should not be made.