Physicians’ Empathy and Clinical Outcomes for Diabetic Patients – Academic Medicine

Purpose: To test the hypothesis that physicians’ empathy is associated with positive clinical outcomes for diabetic patients.



Conclusions: The hypothesis of a positive relationship between physicians’ empathy and patients’ clinical outcomes was confirmed, suggesting that physicians’ empathy is an important factor associated with clinical competence and patient outcomes.


Empathy, an essential component of the physician–patient relationship, may be linked to positive patient outcomes. Although this notion is consistent with the conceptual view of physician–patient relationships,  empirical data supporting the association between physicians’ empathy and tangible clinical outcomes are difficult to find. Several studies generally support the notion that the quality of the physician–patient relationship (as a proxy for empathic engagement in patient care) has a positive influence on patient outcomes. 


Author Information

Dr. Hojat, Mr. Louis,  Dr. Markham, Dr. Wender, Ms. Rabinowitz,  Dr. Gonnella