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April 1991

Clinical Role Models: Importance of Attending Faculty-Reply

Arch Intern Med. 1991;151(4):818-821. doi:10.1001/archinte.1991.00400040146043

In Reply. —  Pais addresses a very worrisome deficiency of clinical role models in the underfinanced, understaffed city hospital setting. The "rambo resident" fills in the void and sets the tone for more junior learners—a technologically focused, clinically immature, and psychosocially barren approach that neglects the patient as a person with "human" needs. The learner is basically taught to view the patient as a disease manifest by a set of laboratory results, not as a human being trying to cope with an illness.Pais' points are well taken and portray the worst case scenario of the problems that I addressed in my commentary. The take home message remains the same: patient care in general and patient-physician communication in particular will not improve until the most clinically adept and highly motivated bedside clinicians return to center stage as the role models for students and residents. Academic leaders must first acknowledge the