Managing Personal and Professional Boundaries

How to Make the Physician’s Own Issues a Resource in Patient Care
  • Susan H. McDaniel
  • Thomas L. Campbell
  • David B. Seaburn


Empathy and sensitivity are resources in family-oriented primary care that are largely developed in the providers’ own personal and family life. A physician’s appreciation of the richness of emotional life, the complexity of human problems, and the humility inherent in human suffering forms the foundation for such empathy and fuels a successful doctor-patient relationship. A physician may be drawn to primary care in the first place because his or her upbringing has resulted in a highly developed sense of responsibility and altruism. Many primary care physicians played a caretaking role that was highly valued in their original families, and has led to a commitment to serving others and a sensitivity to illness and loss.


Family Member Primary Care Physician Family Life Alcoholic Patient Personal Issue 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1990

Authors and Affiliations

  • Susan H. McDaniel
    • 1
  • Thomas L. Campbell
    • 1
  • David B. Seaburn
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Medicine and Highland Hospital, Jacob B. Holler Family Medicine CenterUniversity of RochesterRochesterUSA

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