I want to raise a glass to the general practitioner! We live in a world focused on becoming more and more special, but where does that leave the generalists? Does that make them just run of the mill? A bit lackluster? Less sexy? I for one think we should celebrate the role of the GP.
When I consider how many of my peers have lost their love for dentistry, I wonder how it happened. The challenge of overbearing regulation, litigation and patient demands is a mine field. In an effort to avoid the attention of the over-officious regulators and ambulance chasers, there seems to be a trend toward defensive dentistry. This leads to a downward spiral of clinical ability.
Is it a fear of failure and the resulting adverse sequelae, or lack of confidence in one’s ability, that has led to this defensiveness? Probably a combination of both, and it’s resulting in patients being referred even for relatively simple procedures. A specialist referral was not a luxury my father (a dentist) had when he started out. He was in at the deep end and just had to get on with it. And now, more than a decade past what many consider retirement age, he still practices and loves his career. So, what is the difference?