I've written here and in The No Asshole Rule about how physicians are among the worst bullies, and also, about how when people around them (especially nurses) fear that they will be bullied for pointing-out mistakes by doctors, that the lack of psychological safety leads to more mistakes (and also drives good people out of nursing and other medical professions). I have seen this kind of bullying first hand (see this post about Dr. Gooser) as well. And see this post too about an asshole infested hospital. It appears that with this recent court ruling against a bullying doctor and, more recently, with is new set of guidelines for hospitals for the Joint Commission, which accredits most U.S. hospitals, that the pressure against asshole doctors is mounting. I quote from this AP story:
'CHICAGO - Bullying doctors can make nurses afraid to question their performance, resulting in medical errors, according to a hospital group that announced new requirements for cracking down on intimidating behavior.
Outbursts and condescending language threaten patient safety and increase the cost of care, according to a safety alert issued Wednesday by the Joint Commission, an independent organization that accredits most of the nation's hospitals.
Hospitals will be required by next year to have codes of conduct and processes for dealing with inappropriate behavior by staff, said the group's president, Dr. Mark Chassin. Hospitals without such systems risk losing their accreditation, he said.
Powerful doctors mean money for hospitals because they choose where to admit their patients, but they "should not be left off the hook," said Dr. Peter Angood, vice president of the group, which is based in suburban Chicago.
Grena Porto, a nurse involved in the group's efforts, said nurses need to be "appropriately assertive" and feel safe enough to ask a doctor, "Are you sure we're supposed to operate on the right leg, rather than the left?"
Nurses, pharmacists and hospital administrators also can be culprits, but it's the doctors who bully nurses that are the most significant for patient safety, said Dr. Alan Rosenstein, a researcher on the topic. He applauded the group's action.'