I'm fine with nursing, therapy, or other staff calling me whatever they want. But when it comes to patients, I think they should call me Dr. McFizz out of respect. After all, I would never consider calling them by their first name without being invited. And sometimes I even have to be reminded several times by patients to call them by their first name, because I usually default to the last name.
I was discussing this with a physician colleague recently:
Me: "One thing that bugs me is when patients call me by my first name."
Him: "Patient call you by your first name? Really?"
Me: "Yeah! It happens all the time. That never happens to you?"
Him: "No. Never."
Him: "Well, I always introduce myself when I walk into the room as Dr. Soandso."
Me: "So do I."
Him: "How do they know your first name then?"
Me: "They read it off my badge."
Him: "Well, maybe that's the problem. You shouldn't have your first name on your badge."
Me: "YOUR first name is on your badge."
Him: "Maybe it's because I wear a tie."
Hmm. Or maybe it's the Y chromosome?
One of my hypotheses was that patients forget that I'm a doctor during the course of our conversation, and assume I must be a nurse or therapist. But right after this, I was with a patient's family member where I had a long conversation about medical care, and she said she was so appreciative to get information from a doctor. Then when I left, she said, "Bye, Fizzy!"