Caring is fundamental to competence in medicine. Expressions of humaneness in the relationship between doctor and patient foster bonds of trust, enabling doctors and patients to communicate in ways that enhance diagnosis, treatment, and compliance. To be effective, a caring attitude must be adopted by all persons involved in the delivery of health care. Components of caring can be specified, learned, and incorporated into routine medical practice. Through their impact on stress management and coping, as well as morale and job satisfaction, the organizational and administrative practices surrounding health care encounters decisively impinge on caring. The organizational and financial arrangements for enhancing the humane delivery of health care are examined.