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Empathy can benefit both doctor and patient

Louise Prince, MDEstablishing empathy for a patient can be tough for doctors under increasing time pressure. Yet empathy – being able to see the world as the patient does – can benefit both the patient and the doctor, says Louise Prince, MD, an emergency physician at Upstate. She explores the difference between sympathy and empathy and discusses research showing that an empathetic doctor can help patients feel trust and follow instructions and give the doctor a feeling of well-being and job satisfaction. Medical schools are beginning to stress empathy, says Prince, who offers some ways to build empathy.