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July 6, 2005

Acting and Clinical Empathy

Author Affiliations

Letters Section Editor: Robert M. Golub, MD, Senior Editor.

JAMA. 2005;294(1):39-40. doi:10.1001/jama.294.1.39-b

To the Editor: In suggesting that deep acting can compensate for the deficiency of antecedent essentials like compassion, sensitivity, and insight, Drs Larson and Yao1 appear to agree with the wag who said, “Once you can fake sincerity, you’ve got it made.” Acting methods used in emotional labor, adopted from organizational techniques of business, do little more than follow the marketplace model of medical care that regards physicians as providers and patients as consumers.

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