When Kate Granger (@grangerkate), a physician in the UK, was diagnosed with cancer, her physicians and nurses often neglected to introduce themselves by name. In response, she began a #hellomynameis campaign on Twitter to encourage medical professionals provide the simplest human courtesy – an introduction. From the BMJ blog:
The beauty of the idea is its simplicity. Anyone can introduce themselves, and it doesn’t cost a thing. It is a message that is easy to implement, improves communication, and is a gentle reminder that patients are at the heart of everything we do. In a time of increased pressure and low morale, it empowers healthcare workers to take some control for the patient experience, away from targets and box ticking. It empowers patients, too, to expect at least an introduction and hopefully a more level relationship all round. Better for patients and rewarding for staff: improving the patient experience makes everyone feel good.
Thanks to @hospicedoctor for letting us know.
A study by researchers at Johns Hopkins has found new interns lacking in bedside skills such as introducing themselves and sitting down with patients.
For the study, trained observers followed 29 internal medicine interns — physicians in their first year out of medical school — at The Johns Hopkins Hospital and the University of Maryland Medical Center for three weeks during January 2012. They witnessed 732 inpatient “encounters” during 118 intern work shifts. The observers used an iPod Touch app to record whether the interns employed five key strategies known as etiquette-based communication: introducing oneself, explaining one’s role in the patient’s care, touching the patient, asking open-ended questions such as “How are you feeling today?” and sitting down with the patient.
Just the other day we reported on bioethics in Hollywood films. Below is a trailer for the new movie Hours set during Hurricane Katrina. Paul Walker stars as a father whose premature daughter’s life depends on a ventilator…powered by a hand-operated generator for three minute intervals.
For a real-life account of hospital evacuation during another hurricane, read the powerful story “The Midnight Evacuation of NYU Medical Center.”
In a recent NY Times article, David Bornstein discusses Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen’s course The Healer’s Art.
“These high levels of distress, depression, loss of satisfaction, fatigue, and burnout have big repercussions for quality of care,” explains Dr. Tait Shanafelt, director of the Mayo Clinic Department of Medicine’s program on physician well-being. It leads to medical errors, substance abuse, and doctors quitting — something that a country with an aging population and a shortage of doctors can ill afford.
How could we help medicine overcome its own illness?
That’s a question that has occupied Dr. Rachel Naomi Remen for decades. Remen is a clinical professor of family and community medicine at the U.C.S.F. School of Medicine and the director of the Institute for the Study of Health and Wellness, at Commonweal. Over the past 22 years, she has been advancing a powerfully subversive addition to the medical curriculum, a course called The Healer’s Art.
What do A Beautiful Mind, Gattaca, Million Dollar Baby, and Lorenzo’s Oil have in common? They’re all films exploring themes of bioethics. NPR reports:
A group of bioethicists from the Johns Hopkins went to Hollywood on Oct. 8 to talk about injecting an extra dose of accuracy in film and television. The Science and Entertainment Exchange, a project of the National Academy of Sciences, hosted the event.
To Rick Loverd, head of the exchange, the bioethics panel represents a natural meeting of the minds. “Storytellers really enjoy working at the edge of the bell curve,” he tells Shots. “Where it’s unclear where the right answer is and there’s moral ambiguity. Thinking about bioethics really engages an audience about thinking about the future.”
The article also highlights Johns Hopkins’ Berman Institute for Bioethics’ Bioethics in Television Media, which categorizes television clips by show and ethical theme.
Daniel Radcliffe and Jon Hamm star together in a new adaptation of Mikhail Bulgakov’s medical tales (via NYT).
Based on an early, loosely connected, autobiographical series of short stories from the 1920s by the Russian writer Mikhail Bulgakov,the series (a second season has been commissioned by Sky Arts) was conceived by the British producer Clelia Mountford and was made because of the interest of its stars, Jon Hamm of “Mad Men” and Daniel Radcliffe of the Harry Potter films.
Bulgakov’s stories are episodes in the life of a medical school graduate dispatched in 1916 to a distant country hospital, where he conducts gruesome surgeries in primitive conditions, rails against the backwardness of the peasants, pines for the bright lights (or just the electricity) of Moscow and lives in terror of killing his patients through inexperience.
A Young Doctor’s Notebook is currently airing on Wednesdays on Ovation.
Image from hobbieroth.blogspot.com, illustration by Frank Netter
Walk into any anatomy lab around the nation, and you’ll find Frank Netter’s Atlas of Anatomy at nearly every bench. From The Atlantic, a review of a new biography of Frank Netter, physician and medical illustrator.
But despite his remarkable talent, he had promised his mother he would go to medical school and, in 1927, he enrolled at New York University Medical College. While his fellow classmates spent their spare time studying for examinations, Netter drew haunting images of Bellevue Hospital, where he would eventually complete his internship and, in a harbinger of things to come, a picture entitled “Healing Hands,” in which a doctor applied a bandage to a patient’s fingers.
Netter Images relates the master’s humanistic approach to illustration.
“I try to depict living patients whenever possible,” Netter said. “After all, physicians do see patients, and we must remember we are treating whole human beings.”
Filed under Arts, Education
It’s an exciting fall for the Center for Humanism & Medicine. Over the summer we joined the RU family and are thrilled to be part of a growing network of students and faculty committed to excellence in education and patient care. Check in with us for updates, events and new features.
As spring approaches, second year medical students are nearing the end of classroom learning. Soon, their education will be drawn from ward rounds, small conferences, and self-study. Many celebrate the end of lecture as the end of humdrum learning and bland PowerPoints. Yet every so often, the rare talk appears – a spellbinding lecture that unites the elements in a symphonic aha! What are these lecturers doing differently?
A great lecturer tells a story. It has a beginning, a middle, and an end. It poses problems that it proceeds to address, and it keeps learners in suspense, waiting to see how they can be worked out. Great lecturers often share responsibility for solving these problems with learners, working with them in real time to find a solution. Learners are not merely sitting and passively listening. Far from it, they are challenged and engaged, actively thinking and imagining right along with the lecturer as both struggle toward new insights.
In this Moth piece, a therapist describes her journey with a patient whose cancer returns. After hours of sessions, what two word sentence is the most comforting?
Take 15 minutes to listen to Segment 1 below (click >> arrow).
Image via http://www.prx.org/themoth