The increasingly swift changes in the field of medicine require a reassessment of the skills necessary for the training of technically qualified doctors. Today's physicians also need to be capable of managing the complex issue of personal relationships with patients. Recent pedagogical debates have focused on so-called "soft skills", whose acquisition is presented in literature as a quite recent addition to medical studies. Moreover, the historical investigation of deontological texts dating from the mid-nineteenth century back to the Hippocratic Oath shows that medicine has always discussed the need to integrate technical expertise in medicine with specific personal and relationship-based skills. Debates have often circled around whether these "soft skills" could actually be taught or how they could be successfully transmitted to training physicians. The belief that defining medicine is more complex than defining other similar sciences and that the instruments to be used in the relationship with patients cannot be limited to those provided by technical aspects shows a new awareness. Today, this view is often stated as an innovative realization on the part of doctors with regard to the complexity of training and action in a delicate area in which they are entrusted with the management of the balance of the system that is the human body.

Soft Skills Are Hard Skills—A Historical Perspective

Silvia Iorio;Marco Cilione;Marco Tofani;Valentina Gazzaniga
2022

Abstract

The increasingly swift changes in the field of medicine require a reassessment of the skills necessary for the training of technically qualified doctors. Today's physicians also need to be capable of managing the complex issue of personal relationships with patients. Recent pedagogical debates have focused on so-called "soft skills", whose acquisition is presented in literature as a quite recent addition to medical studies. Moreover, the historical investigation of deontological texts dating from the mid-nineteenth century back to the Hippocratic Oath shows that medicine has always discussed the need to integrate technical expertise in medicine with specific personal and relationship-based skills. Debates have often circled around whether these "soft skills" could actually be taught or how they could be successfully transmitted to training physicians. The belief that defining medicine is more complex than defining other similar sciences and that the instruments to be used in the relationship with patients cannot be limited to those provided by technical aspects shows a new awareness. Today, this view is often stated as an innovative realization on the part of doctors with regard to the complexity of training and action in a delicate area in which they are entrusted with the management of the balance of the system that is the human body.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11573/1654250
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