The failings of healthcare professionals (and the organisations they work in) seems to be a hot topic currently. The recent GMC case relating to Dr Hadiza Bawa-Garba has rightly created an outcry about how poorly structured much of our healthcare system is when it comes to dealing with adverse events. And closer to home, dentists are now getting to grips with how to deal with the new GDC requirements relating to the new CPD guidelines, reflecting on their personal development and things that don't go well. So revisiting one of favourite books from last year "Black Box Thinking" feels very appropriate at this time.
Last week I had a bit of time to kill so I loaded the TED talks app on my surgery TV. One of the talks that caught my attention was by David Eagleman. He is a neuroscientist who’s name popped out at me because he has written a couple of books on my “to read” list about how the brain works.
So when I was deciding which audiobook to download next and I saw that he had just released a new book I thought that had to be my choice.
Last year I read or listened to a lot of books. Some fantastic, some mediocre. By the end of the year I had a fair list of books that I had found interesting or powerful. This year while continuing to consume new content I plan to revisit some of the best books I have read in the past hopefully to pick up even more on a second pass.
When reading and reviewing books I am always mindful that, depending on genre and content, most books have a target audience of who will enjoy it and who will most benefit from it. That knowledge of genre and content influences how I consider the book. It is rare that I find a "universal" book, i.e. one that I think has the potential to benefit and interest almost any member of the human race. Paul Kalanithi's book When breath becomes air however is such a book.
Dr Chris Harper