For now I have seen one infp doc in this forum who is @eyenexepee
I would like you to share your thoughts.
Yikes! I feel honored to be mentioned like this (and slightly under pressure since it seems there are some expectations xD )!.. But I'm not a doctor. ^^;
I did study medicine for a while, but broke it off, in the end getting a bachelor's degree in communication (organizational/corporate). It was medical communication training that inspired me to go that direction xD
But uhm, sure, I'll share some thoughts if that's okay with you. I'll leave out personal experiences for now, because without those, this is going to be a lengthy post already. xD
I am not a doc but I was very interested in becoming a veterinarian when I was younger. The possibility of going to med school has crossed my mind since I already have a bio degree and I already work at a hospital with doctors but I always though that it is too hard, competitive and expensive.
I'm sure you don't live in The Netherlands, where I live. From what I understand (I have a brother here in this country who is a doctor, and a cousin in the US, who is also a doctor), they'd have to 'retake' medical knowledge exams if they wanted to practice medicine in a different country, because the education is very different. Which sounds quite stupid, seeing how the human body is a universal thing :S
Nonetheless, this geographical difference is an important one. From what I know, there is not much competitiveness between doctors in our country. Maybe there is some competitiveness among specialists, but in general, not really. Assuming you live in either the US or the UK, you have a medical sector that is tied more closely to capitalism (our medical sector is pretty regulated). I suspect this is an important cause for the competitiveness you may perceive. I think it's also 'cheaper' in this country to become a doctor xD
I think the competitiveness can be a good thing, as long as it is in moderation, which I personally doubt it is in the US/UK. In this country, they're actually trying to make the medical sector more 'market-like' to drive prices down etc (which I think is a bad thing, but alright...). So I wouldn't be surprised to see more competitiveness in our medical sector as time goes by.
Anyways, it is up to you how you handle that competitiveness. INFP's don't handle that well in general, I think. We prefer harmonious relationships, also at the workfloor.
I see INFPs as great doctors always putting the patients need first. I have known doctors who are so cold hearted and insensitive to patients.
I can see why you'd say that. I mean, INFP doctors are more likely able to empathize with patients than say, INTP doctors. I wouldn't be surprised if the majority of them would seem cold and insensitive compared to the majority of INFP doctors.
Like you said, being a great doctor is about putting the patient's need first. And this is where it becomes interesting for INFP doctors - because the patient has both medical and personal/mental needs. One can influence the other, but they're not the same. As example, bodily suffering from say, having your arm amputated because of a bad car crash, will most likely cause some mental suffering as well (okay this is a bad example now that I think of it but bear with me).
A good doctor, IMO, is mainly there for the physical cure. But a good doctor also has some 'social skills', this being empathizing, interpersonal communication, etc. The good doctor treats the body, but also needs to talk to the patient. What can the patient expect in terms of Quality of Life, what she/he needs to do to take care post-surgery, etc. At the same time, the patient is struggling with loss - face it, your life is going to be very very different after having your arm amputated. So how do you get all this medical information across to someone who has to deal with loss? Social skills. Or communication skills, if you will.
Now, as a stereotype INFP 'good doctor', you may have a natural inclination to empathize etc, but your main priority is the patient's bodily health. You may 'feel' her/his pain to the point of catering to all of the patient's need with utmost care and sensitivity, but that will 1) drain you (since INFP's stereotypically spend energy interacting with others) and 2) cut the time you have to treat your other patients.
As a summary: it can be both an advantage and disadvantage as a 'good doctor' to be an INFP.
But I imagine that infp doctors face many challenges as well that compromise their values etc etc.
There can be compromises of any sort... Compromises are plenty in the medical sector, I imagine even more so in hospitals than in private practices, since you have to 'obey' to the rules of the hospital. I imagine it's worse in the US/UK than it is over here, referring to once again capitalism.
It is not that non-INFP doctors don't have values, but I think they'll have less of a struggle with their values than their INFP colleagues, since INFP doctors are most likely more sensitive to conflicting values. What if your bedridden patient doesn't want to take the medical treatment that you deem best - for instance, what if in your medical opinion, your patient must have her/his arm amputated, while she/he refuses that treatment? Or what if they refuse a certain treatment on account of their beliefs (blood transfusion is a no go for some)?
*looks at length of post*
*looks at the clock*
I need some time off this topic, but I'll see that I'll reply to your other posts later, and if you wish, I can add some personal experiences.