Medical Decision Making Analysis

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The books Your Medical Mind by Drs. Jerome Groopman and Pamela Hartzband and Happiness in a Storm by Dr. Wendy Harpham discuss two different approaches to medical decision making. Medical decisions are not only decisions patients make in life or death situations but also the mundane decisions patients make routinely, such as whether to ingest an allergy pill. In our technologically dependent age, patients face many challenges when attempting to make the best possible medical decision for them. For example, the media, internet, disagreeing experts, and even personal anecdotes we hear influence our decisions by instigating or hindering us from picking a certain plan of treatment. Drs. Groopman and Hartzband, both of whom are practicing physicians, …show more content…
Since being happy with one’s life is a priority to Harpham, she emphasizes that choosing a medical treatment is the most important decision a person will make (Harpham 48) and that making a meticulous decision now will decrease stress later in life (Harpham 154). Harpham offers many suggestions to help heal one’s body, such as consuming nutritious food, increasing circulation to all parts of the body, exercising, and sleeping (Harpham 50-53). Harpham writes that creating moments of happiness can help a patient feel and get better (Harpham 59). Moreover, Harpham says patients can cultivate happiness by having Healthy Hope, or the belief that patients can help themselves improve their situation and feel happier (Harpham 253). In addition, Harpham adds that having an optimistic attitude and trust in family and the health care team are essential to Healthy Survivorship (Harpham 301). In terms of choosing a physician to treat an illness, Harpham states that patients need to find a doctor who will respect their values rather than someone who shares their values because values change over time (Harpham 74). This will ensure that the patient has a good working relationship with the doctor throughout the healing process. Groopman and Hartzband strive to help patients decide what is right for them; …show more content…
Groopman and Hartzband and Dr. Harpham targeted their books to guide patients on how to make medical decisions. Although their intentions are similar, their differing motivations for writing a book elucidate why Happiness in a Storm takes a holistic approach to medical decisions while Your Medical Mind is narrow in its focus. Drs. Groopman and Hartzband wrote Your Medical Mind to help patients in making the best decision for them. Hence, the book primarily discusses why patients make the decisions they do and how they can make favorable decisions based on their personal beliefs. In slight contrast Dr. Harpham penned Happiness in a Storm to provide a guide for patients to seek happiness in life despite medical problems. Although her primary goal is to inspire and motivate patients, Dr. Harpham also discusses how to make medical decisions in order to help patient attain the happiness. Although the authors of both books have similar intentions, their different approaches to medical decision making lead to different recommendations for their

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