The decline in the attraction and prestige of the clinician-scientist paradigm is due to the dissonance between clinical work and conducting research in basic science. Medicine entails alleviating distress and prolonging life. Thus, medical research deals directly with the questions: what ails our patients and what shortens their lives? How can it be prevented? How can we alleviate suffering and prolong life? Research designs that fit these questions are: researcher (or patient) initiated randomized controlled trials; systematic reviews and meta-analysis; high-quality observational studies that address risk factors, natural history of disease, side-effects, and efficiency of treatment; research in ethics; and qualitative research. The clinician-scientist should perform medical research. Investing in this paradigm wilt encourage young doctors to conduct research directly oriented to benefit their patients.
|Published - Oct 2010