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Say Anything | May 2019

Say Anything: CRST Europe Readers Comment on Culture

Why is culture important to the success of your practice?

John P. Berdahl, MD <br>Vance Thompson Vision, Sioux Falls, South Dakota

John P. Berdahl, MD
Vance Thompson Vision, Sioux Falls, South Dakota

"Culture is a representation of what we really believe in the depths of our core. Our beliefs will shape our actions, and our actions will shape our culture. Culture creates the environment that employees and patients step into everyday. When employees enjoy coming to work and patients enjoy their experiences, success is inevitable.”

Melissa Toyos, MD <br>Toyos Clinic,<br>Nashville, Tennessee

Melissa Toyos, MD
Toyos Clinic,
Nashville, Tennessee

"Culture sets the tone for everything we do in our clinic. We strive to maintain a culture of openness, employee empowerment, hard work, and curiosity at Toyos Clinic. Our unique clinical culture allows individual growth and learning while we tackle cutting-edge solutions for some of the most interesting problems in ophthalmology.”

O. Bennett Walton, MD, MBA <br>Slade & Baker Vision, Houston, Texas

O. Bennett Walton, MD, MBA
Slade & Baker Vision, Houston, Texas

"Physicians are just as susceptible to availability bias as everyone else. It is easy to consider our examination and discussion the main parts of a patient interaction, as that is what we see. For each doctor interaction, however, there are typically four to five staff member interactions, and these staff member interactions give the patient context that either undermines or reinforces the doctor’s recommendations. Each piece of communication, whether verbal or nonverbal, answers two questions in the patient’s mind: Do I think this doctor and staff care about me? Does this practice seem like a place that would do excellent work? A positive culture of caring and excellence shapes the staff’s attitude that patients invariably see and notice. Whether or not a patient remains compliant with treatment or decides to follow through with a recommended procedure can be as influenced by culture as it can by the physician’s recommendations.”