Council on Medical Student Education in Pediatrics

COMSEP Logo

Search This Site

Journal Club

Hojat M et al, The Jefferson Scale of Physician Empathy, Acad Med, 77; S58 Brief review by Steve Miller, Columbia University


Hojat M et al, The Jefferson Scale of Physician Empathy, Acad Med, 77; S58

Brief review by Steve Miller, Columbia University

This is an interesting study - it implies that empathy is a trait - that is somewhat stable across situations. However, most research (see Ginsburg S, et al - in the previous Journal review) suggests that empathy and professionalism are context specific - meaning - you might be more likely to behave with empathy in one situation - but not in another - depending on your level of comfort and knowledge of each situation. The scale does have implications - for measurements across groups. The authors imply that technology oriented MD's (surgeons - for example) don't need to be as empathetic. Would you agree? SM

Return to Journal Club