Undoubtedly, in their job. Defining good behaviours are indeed

Undoubtedly,
people have high expectations towards health professionals that includes
doctors, nurses, pharmacists, consultants, lab assistants and other individuals
working in the healthcare sector. These people are expected to be emphatic, knowledgeable,
informative, honest, compassionate, caring, ethical and the list goes. They are
always hoped to act in the best interest of patients, in a very respectful and
civil manner. They are expected to be equipped with sufficient medical
knowledge and skills and being up-to-date with recent medical breakthroughs. These
high expectations from the society become a concrete reason why health
professionals need to maintain good behaviours in their job. Defining good
behaviours are indeed really broad, but there are professional and ethical guidelines
outlined usually by the Medical Council or other healthcare authorities in a
country. For example in the UK, health professionals under the Health
Professional Council have to obey to the Standards of Conduct, Performance and
Ethics (1). However, there are certain health professionals that adopt unacceptable
behaviours that can largely affects the quality of healthcare. These behaviours
may involve usage of inappropriate words or actions that may affect his or her
capability to cooperate with others, or interfering the quality of healthcare
given to patients, or affecting the safety of patients (2). These disruptive
behaviours can give a negative impact towards the relationship with patients
and other colleagues in the healthcare team, and will give a bad impression
towards the public.

Patients
have an expectation that doctors should maintain a certain level of personal
integrity and have a good standard of behaviour within their personal life (3).
They act as role models to the public. Usually, people tend to expect that
health professionals should put a clear boundary between personal life and professional
life. Their personal life or their attitudes outside work have no concern
towards the patients or the public, as long as they can provide the best
quality of treatment and maintain good communication skills when dealing with
patients. But if the behaviours outside work or their personal life affect
their ability to practice medicine in the aspect of professional judgement or
conduct, it could affect the relationship with patients and other staffs and
can be perceived as unacceptable (3). Abuse
of mind-altering substances that includes alcohol and drugs by physicians is
one of the examples that I could find where bad behaviours outside work may
affect physicians’ professionalism at work. This may give a bad impression towards
patients and may harm patients’ safety if the physician practise under the
influence. In California, US, a young ER physician has shared his experience in
an article in TIME, where he called a leading surgeon to do an emergency
appendectomy to a patient but the surgeon arrived drunk with no other surgeons
available in the hospital (4). We can see such personal habits put a patients’
life at risk and indeed this behaviour is indeed unethical and unprofessional. In
the United States, the rates of drug addiction among physicians has risen to
15% which is higher than that of the population as a whole which is from 8% to
10% (5). This problem is indeed alarming, as these physicians have taken the
oath to care about others. Drug or alcohol abuse records might give a bad
reputation towards the doctor and cause lack of confidence among patients to
accept their medical advices as their impression towards the doctor has been
demolished.  Such unacceptable behaviour
should be avoided.

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Apart
from that, effective cooperation in health-care delivery is indeed crucial for
patient safety and to improve quality care towards patients. A team with
different specialties that includes specialists, general practitioners, nurses,
and others could work together to develop care plans and procedures to be taken,
identify diagnoses and generally provide high quality treatment for patients (6).
However, mutual respect, good communication, openness in accepting opinions and
high commitment are all essential elements in order to achieve effective
teamwork. Acting disrespectfully and avoiding to accept others’ opinions and
suggestions can disrupt cooperation between health professionals. According to
a doctor-nurse behaviour survey conducted by American College of Physician
Executives in 2009, a participant wrote: “It’s
the everyday lack of respect and communication that most adversely affects
patient care and staff morale (7).” Another participant wrote about a surgeon who was frustrated by staffing
issue in the Operation Theatre yelled publicly that ‘monkeys could be
trained to do what scrub nurses do’ (7).  I regard the surgeon’s action as really
disrespectful and unprofessional as a colleague and could weaken the
doctor-nurse relationship in the healthcare team. The surgeon’s action can
humiliate the scrub nurse publicly thus giving a bad impression towards himself
as a senior doctor. Based on the Guide to
Professional Conduct and Ethics for
Registered Medical Practitioners 2016, one have a duty to behave
respectfully towards other colleagues in the workplace and should avoid any
form of bullying and undermining despite being in the position of trust and
authority (8).  I believe that a health
professional should always act in a respectful manner towards his or her
colleague and do not belittle others in spite of the power or seniority that he
or she has because everyone in the team has different capabilities and any
mistakes done should be addressed in a professional way.