The Healing Gap

                          Photo by Ryoji Iwata on Unsplash
Healing and Treating doesn’t have to be an either/or situation.
Have you heard the story that the mother repeatedly brought her son to Gandhi to be healed from his eating a lot of sugar.  On these visits the doctor reviewed the patient but gave no remedy or course of action which became frustrating for the mother.  Finally on the last of many visits, Gandhi looks the boy in the eye and says directly and with compassion, ‘Stop eating sugar’.  As the story goes the boy’s sugar eating problem disappeared in that moment.  Leaving the office the mother looks over her shoulder to ask why it took so long.  The doctor replies, ‘I had to stop eating sugar myself first before I could ask your son to do so.’
Is this story true?
The point is find out how to grow oneself and heal and be on the journey of one’s life that makes us responsible.  Then we can look to see if there is a healing gap in our life or profession where technology or terminology usurps human contact and connection. What is a first step and if now is the time to take it?
Another report this week states that interns in hospitals are exhausted because they have long shift work over night.
12 – 24 hour shifts.  A quick Google search shows that these reports come out every 2 years in the media locally.
Truck drivers are allowed a maximum of 13 hours in Canada.  The reason for the limit is that they won’t have all their faculties to be aware of themselves and others.
A person, a young doctor may have the energy to want to help people and this can give them an extra boost so they do not notice the long day’s demands.  They are fed by this sense of purpose and thrive on more opportunities to learn and get experience so they can be of use when a patient has a question or looks with worry and need at them – the doctor.
Photo by Zach Vessels on Unsplash
This need (of the patient), to be taken care of, to be healed, is an important aspect of people feeling good.  Of being fixed, cured, ‘all better now’.  It pulls energy from the doctor to the patient.  Despite the abundance of advances in medical treatments and developments in medicine that have greatly minimized intrusion for surgeries and deaths or suffering due to various diseases, the need  for healing will never diminish. That is ok, natural, to be expected.  The need to be healed is human.  Some people love healing and some of them become doctors.  The healing capacity is a part of the doctor that needs to be present, active, trained and supported.
Long shifts at the hospital require energy.  Healing requires energy.  Both requirements of doctor energy need to be managed.  How is that going these days in our state of the art medical centres?
There is a gap between treatment and healing.
That gap will be different in each doctor, dentist, massage therapist, nurse, psychologist.
Gaps in healing accompanying the treatment will be created and impacted for a variety of reasons.   Reasons like culture of the person, the culture of the workplace or industry, confidence of the person in themselves as a medical professional, level of personal development, understanding of healing, physical health, emotional health, relationship health, financial and spiritual well being, training, education and mission in life.
It makes sense there is a gap because the machines and chemicals we insert into the medical process between doctor and patient for getting us back to health.  You could say, pills and devices work on the physical while healing takes on the person occupying the body.
Do we know the gap exists?
Do we think it is bad and there is someone to blame for it?
Can it be addressed in medical school curriculum or does it have to be on an individual basis?
Is it relevant in our new moment of virtual medicine and AI.
The gap is inevitable with the growth of technology and maybe not a bad thing at certain times to have a distance between the doctor and patient as long as the patient is directed along a healing path because the gap made them more proactive about their own health.
The gap could be necessary for geographical reasons, money, health of the doctor etc.
 Photo by Ramdan Authentic on Unsplash
The efficacy of placebos tells us we can heal ourselves with the power of the human mind and emotion so why do we dump that responsibility onto the doctor?
Identifying and dealing with the healing gap is not a blame game but a call to responsibility and actions and learning and community.
Big Pharma is not evil in its existence but their ways are the equivalent of the fertilizer/seed conglomerates in the agricultural sector by using a business model that destroys, quite often, growth.
So what can be in done in the face of billion dollar government health budgets, massive profit seeking companies plus a mix of sincere health professionals and self satisfying business people?
Healing is a power that responds in the moment of the injury or sickness.  Healing is already happening before we even know it.
Healing power is there for doctors to connect to.  Therefore to be able to manage their own energy without reducing their role in the healing process.
Healing is fast  – can we catch up with it?
Healing is precise – do we know when it is to start and finish?
Healing is to be understood for its many facets or expressions and the human acts it can permeate .
What else?


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