10 Behavioral Questions Every Physician Recruiter Should Ask

A good bedside manner leads to happier, healthier patients

More than ever, patients can choose where they want to receive care. Higher patient satisfaction scores not only result in higher reimbursement for the facility but more business as well, as patients are more likely to refer friends and family to doctors they feel they can trust.

And a good bedside manner isn’t just good for the bottom line. A recent  study revealed that physicians with a good bedside manner have a positive impact on patients’ health, aiding in their efforts to lose weight, lower blood pressure and manage painful symptoms. Researchers even found that a strong patient-doctor relationship can have a greater influence on heart attack prevention than the reported effects of low-dose aspirin or cholesterol-lowering statins.

Qualities to Look For in a Physician

Today’s healthcare consumers are savvy and are looking for doctor who will listen to them, take care of them and truly understand who they are. When you’re conducting your next interview, keep an eye out for these qualities to help you determine if a physician has a  good bedside manner:

  • Professional
  • Patient
  • Respectful
  • Attentive
  • Empathetic, caring and compassionate
  • Personable
  • Forthright
  • Thorough
  • Thoughtful
  • Open-minded
  • Confident (but not arrogant)

How do you assess a physician’s communication skills and bedside manner?

Once you know the qualities you’re looking for in a physician, the next step is to determine if a potential candidate has these traits. Try asking these ten behavioral questions in your next interview to help you in your decision:

  • Describe a time when you were faced with a stressful situation and how you coped with it.
  • Give me a specific example of a time when you had to conform to a policy with which you did not agree.
  • What do you do if you disagree with a patient?
  • What is your typical way of dealing with conflict? Give me an example.
  • Tell me about a recent situation in which you had to deal with a very upset patient or staff member.
  • Describe a time when you were wrong.
  • Tell me about a time when you misdiagnosed a case and how you resolved it.
  • Describe a time when you anticipated potential problems and developed preventive measures.
  • How have you handled a difficult situation with a supervisor?
  • Walk me through how you present complicated information or instructions to patients.

Determining if a physician has the clinical skills and experience to perform the job is only part of hiring the right doctor. In your next physician interview, take time to focus on behavioral questions to get a glimpse into how the physician will handle the various situations he or she may face in their new assignment. Finding a doctor who can build strong relationships will be a long-term benefit to both the facility and the patients.

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