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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Jane E. Corboy, MD (Baylor College of Medicine)
Description: This book is a concise description of a patient-centered model of patient-physician communication, written for clinicians, educators, and researchers. There are six key elements in the authors' model, each of which is illustrated by one or more clinical vignettes.
Purpose: The purpose is to describe and explore a model of physician-patient communication that emphasizes patients' needs rather than the traditional medical model. There is an emphasis on the theoretical basis of the model, for the purpose of education and research on patient-centered medicine. The authors clearly achieve the objective of describing and explaning of their model.
Audience: Written for primary care practitioners, it also addresses the needs of medical educators and academicians, by including sections on "Learning and Teaching" and "Research on Patient-Centered Communication." The authors are a team of well-respected researchers, educators, and clinicians in field of patient-physician communication.
Features: There are minimal illustrations, which are reasonably useful, but not crucial to the understanding of the content. The references include both historical and current research citations. The book is very readable with a clearly legible font, and the clinical vignettes clarify the concepts quite well.
Assessment: This is a useful book for medical educators and students of patient-physician communication skills. It could easily be used in a course on interviewing skills for medical students or residents. It would be less useful to active practitioners, although those who wish to improve their skills in this area would find this an interesting, enjoyable, and readable book.