During the period of conflict that led to the dissolution of the former Yugoslavia, the Serbian healthcare system suffered greatly; as a result, relationships between physicians and their patients reached an all-time low. After cessation of the various wars, a group of medical students attempted to assess the state of the patient–physician relationship in Serbia. Their study showed a relationship characterised by very meek patients and rather arrogant physicians. Empowered by their engagement, the medical students constructed a set of standards for achieving a proper patient–physician relationship; physicians should be capable of hearing and understanding patients, with the result that the ensuing empowerment can enable patients and physicians to create a tool for changing the relationship between both parties.
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Competing interests: None.