Cynicism as a strategic virtue
Cynicism is often associated with indifference and fatalism – traits which are undoubtedly undesirable among healthcare professionals. However, in this article the authors argue that ‘healthy’ cynicism can be a valuable trait – it can form part of a protective response by physicians to help manage expectations. In a system where economics and measurement are seen to supersede those of care, cynicism can provide critical distance and allow for some realistic optimism about the possibility of providing quality care, albeit with tempered expectations.
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Rose A, Duschinsky, R & Macnaughton J. Cynicism as a strategic virtue. The Lancet. 2017; 389:692-693
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