A Study Of Power Relations In Doctor-Patient Interactions In Selected Hospitals In Lagos State, Nigeria

Qasim Adam


This paper explores power relations in clinical interactions in Nigeria. It seeks to investigate the use of power between
doctors and patients during consultations on patient-centred approach to medicine in selected public and private
hospitals in Lagos State, Nigeria. The objective is to establish how doctors' projection of power, using the discourse
resources of transitivity, affects positively or negatively their relationship with patients. This study employs
triangulation as its methodology. A judicious mix of quantitative and qualitative methods has been utilized to give the  study a scientific shape. Proportionate stratified random sampling and purposive sampling procedures were employed.
The study employs the theoretical and analytical paradigms of Systemic Functional Linguistics and Critical Discourse
Analysis. The findings revealed that doctors predominantly use this process to the benefit of the patients. Minimal level
of intrusive and cooperative interruptions was also observed. It is expected that this study will give more visibility on
the best way patients can be empowered by lessening doctors’ use of polar interrogatives and completely avoiding
interruptive discourse in clinical interactions

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