Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
Better: A Surgeon's Notes on Performance Hardcover – April 3, 2007
|New from||Used from|
Elsevier Sales & Deals
Save up to 50% on textbooks, study guides & resources for your medical specialty.
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
From Bookmarks Magazine
Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.
More About the Author
You can find more at http://www.atulgawande.com.
Top Customer Reviews
The most moving and thought-provoking of these essays, to me, was "The Doctors of the Death Chamber," in which Gawande interviews four doctors (whom he labels "A," "B," "C" and -- wait for it -- "D," in order to secure their anonymity) who help states carry out the death penalty humanely. The use of "humanely" here is questionable; it's humane in the sense that, if we are to use the death penalty, we must not be needlessly cruel at the time of the criminal's death. But it's inhumane in the larger sense that we are furthering a corrupt system -- we are "tinker[ing] with the machinery of death," to use Justice Blackmun's words. Since a doctor's role is to protect human lives, are anaesthesiologists who help execute people painlessly violating their roles? To put it more succinctly: should a doctor make the best of the machinery of death, or should he take no part in the machine? The American Medical Association has its answer and its role.Read more ›
In a section of his book, entitled "The Mop-Up," Gawande discusses polio and the campaign to wipe it out in Asia wherein he was a momentary observer in the field in 2003. Way back in ancient history, when I was a mere child in the 1940s and America was hit with a polio epidemic, I was diagnosed with polio and almost died. Hence the relevance here for me. But more than that, I am convinced to this day that I was "saved" because of the efforts of a nurse -- I'm sure she was one of Gawande's "positive deviants" which he describes in his book -- who insisted on treating me and others with a controversial treatment (opposed by most of the medical "establishment" at the time) called "The Sister Kenny Method." She never lost a patient, by the way; we all recovered without any significant aftereffects that I know of.Read more ›
Some of his essays may appeal more to you than others but I urge you to read the entire book, as well as to get his other one, Complications. I've read medical memoirs that put me to sleep and have been baffled by how someone could take life and death situations and turn them into dry writing. This isn't the case here and you'll come away from the book with a stronger understanding of all the factors (and possible solutions) that make up the world of medicine, medical ethics and patient care today.
But this book also offers you great lessons if you want to understand how science and performance management come together as they should in business or any other field of endeavor. That's because the author sets out to answer a question that is as important for people in business as it is for people in medicine.
What does it take to be good at something when it is so easy not to be?
Gawande ways that most people, especially physicians, think that success in medicine comes from canny diagnosis, technical prowess and the ability to empathize. They think that progress in medicine comes from scientific breakthroughs and sophisticated equipment and procedures.
The reality, though, is quote different. Improved performance, according to Gawande, comes from
Again and again Gawande demonstrates how concentrating on patients and on performance leads to improvement for both individuals and for medical practice in general. He does this with a mix of historical examples, patient stories, statistics and stories from his own life and practice.
He divides the book into three sections corresponding to his three necessities for improvement.
In the section on Diligence the chapters are on washing hands, dealing with polio in India, and dealing with casualties from the Iraq war. The chapter on military medicine and the concentration on process improvement is worth the price of the book if you're in business.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Interesting read. Inspiring to be better at your profession. Love the section at the end about "Five ways to be a positive deviant"Published 4 hours ago by LAO
Light-read on a surgeon's effort to evolve professionally and personally. Last chapters contain interesting stories on how specific issues on medicine have gone on breakthroughs.Published 4 days ago by Fabio P Noronha
Spellbinding. The author is a physician. His ideas can be applied to any group or even familyPublished 9 days ago by Iva Oshaunesy
One of the most gifted and observant authors I've encountered. My third book by Atul Gawande. I'm looking forward to many more.Published 10 days ago by Carol Magill
Great read. Required for my graduate class, I would myself not able to put the book down. Gawande illustrates our nations healthcare issues in interesting and easy to understand... Read morePublished 19 days ago by Jessica Kung
Fascinating! I just had to share these incredible insights and experiences with my family as I read through this book. Read morePublished 21 days ago by Erik Gundersen
Practically brand new! I was really impressed with this product. And it's a really great book so far.Published 29 days ago by T. Score