Journal article

Cognitive dissonance: how self-protective distortions can undermine clinical judgement.

Jill Klein, Geoff McColl

Medical Education | Wiley | Published : 2019


CONTEXT: When errors occur in clinical settings, it is important that they are recognised without defensiveness so that prompt corrective action can be taken and learning can occur. Cognitive dissonance - the uncomfortable tension we experience when we hold two or more inconsistent beliefs - can hinder our ability to respond optimally to error. OBJECTIVES: The aim of this paper is to describe the effects of cognitive dissonance, a construct developed and tested in social psychology. We discuss the circumstances under which dissonance is most likely to occur, provide examples of how it may influence clinical practice, discuss potential remedies and suggest future research to test these remedi..

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