Trying To Put A Value on the Doctor-Patient Relationship

The question of what the role of a primary-care physician should be, and how it should be valued, is becoming increasingly important in an age of digitized health information. In the following article, published in New York Times Magazine, Kim Tingley highlights David Meltzer, an economist and a primary-care physician at the University of Chicago, who may be the first and only researcher in the country trying to quantify that relationship’s value in a randomized clinical trial. Through vignettes of Meltzer’s studies, as well as her own personal relationship with her family’s doctor, Tingley emphasizes the significance of the singular connection for both the physician and the patient.