“The Doctor” tells us the storyof a self-centered heart surgeon, Jack McKee, who treats his patients likenames on a list. As a surgeon, he believes no doctor should have an attachmentto his patients. “A surgeon’s job is tocut. You fix it and you get out,” he says. However, he undergoes anattitude change as the movie goes along and he is diagnosed having a tumor in histhroat that is malignant. As his life changes from a doctor to a patient, hispoint of views begins to shift. He then meets another patient named June Ellis,a cancer patient with inoperable brain tumor. June teaches him the importanceof showing kindness to the people around him including his wife, patients,colleague, family and friends.
In the end of the movie, Jack recovers from cancerand begins to teach the new interns the importance of kindness and treatingpatients with respect by making them experience life as a patient withdifferent diseases undergoing different treatments. Thefilm is a good example of how attitude plays an important role in one’s life,especially in the life of a Doctor. The word “Attitude” is defined as they wayyou respond to everything, be it an object, subject, idea or situation. Itcould either be positive or negative, depending on how one views the situation.
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Attitude can have a great impact on your behavior and it is usually the resultof the experiences one has experienced in life or upbringing.In this film, though Jack is themain character, he does have flaws of his own. For example, when Jack’s patientwith a scar on her chest is feeling insecure and mentions that she and herhusband are not close anymore, Jack responds that she should tell her husbandthat she is just like a “Playboycenterfold, because she has the staple marks to prove it.” In thissituation, Jack shows an example of bad attitude as a Doctor because he doesn’toffer comforting words or give assurance to his patient who is already feelinginsecure with herself instead he ridicules her further.Dr. Murray is an example of badattitude, he expected Jack to lie under oath for him when his patient, who wasmistreated, sues him for a major malpractice case.
Dr. Murray did not performhis job as a Doctor and he also expected his friend to lie for him, he showsthe worst attitude in the film.Next, Dr. Leslie Abbott, Jack’sdoctor, is another example of portraying bad attitude. In the film, Dr. Leslietells Jack in simple, plain cold words, “Doctor,you have a growth.” She explains it in strict, medical terms without anycompassion and then gets up and leaves him alone in the room to cope with thenews.
This is also the starting point of Jack’s transformation. He begins torealize the importance of showing kindness to your patients. Throughout themovie, Dr. Leslie’s character doesn’t undergo any changes, she continues on ascold and unfeeling.This film has thought me thatattitude plays an important aspect in life. Your attitude will not only impacton your performance, relationship and success but also your happiness.
Thosewho have a good attitude creates a warm atmosphere around them, this drawspeople towards them and helps build friendly relations. As a doctor, if youhave the right bedside manners, your patients will be more willing to open upto you and they will also respect you as their doctor.In the movie, Dr. Eli Bloomfieldshows the perfect example of a good Doctor. His bedside manner is a perfectexample, he treats his patients with kindness and respect. When Jack asks Dr.Eli to perform his surgery, he replies saying, “Well, Jack, I’ve always wanted to slit your throat, and now I’ve gotthe chance.” Jack then goes on to apologize to him for his previousinsulting behavior.
One’s attitude can be changed andit is never too late to change one’s attitude. Having the right attitude cannotbe thought, it should be from within. However, a bad attitude can be changed, throughself-motivation and self-encouragement.
In the film, Jack, after experiencinglife as a patient, changes his perspective and is able to understand and relateto patients better. He began to teach the new medical students, the importanceof treating patients with care and respect. Through his experience, he was ableto evaluate and appreciate the important aspects in his life. Lastly, the saying, “Attitude iseverything”, means that people with the right attitude in life, are the oneswho succeed. Thus, having a positive attitude brings about a positive change inone’s life.
As an upcoming Medical Doctor, it is important for us to learn theimportance of showing right bedside manners and treating patients with respectand kindness.