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The Gold Humanism in Medicine Honor Society's (GHHS) Solidarity Day for Compassionate Patient Care was held on Feb. 13, 2015. The University of South Alabama College of Medicine chapter of GHHS participated in several activities to remind students and employees of the importance of compassion in medicine.
“Compassion is a huge part of caring for patients because it opens doors of communication between patients and providers,” said Angela King, a fourth-year medical student and GHHS member at the USA College of Medicine.
This year’s Solidarity Day/Week was entitled “Tell Me More.” After obtaining consent, GHHS members spent time learning about hospital patients’ personal lives in order to craft signs for display over their beds.
GHHS members agree that when providers are compassionate towards their patients, it allows the patients to feel comfortable and to express their concerns without any fear. “Knowing a patient on a personal level is essential to addressing their illness,” said Dale Shamburger, another fourth-year medical student and GHHS member at the USA College of Medicine.
Solidarity Day gives students and staff the chance to stop and remember that every patient has a story and that compassionate care is important. “It is so easy to get caught up in the medical treatment of patients. It was refreshing to have an event to remind us that the care of our patients extends far beyond their illness or injury,” said JaneMarie Freeman, a fourth-year medical student and GHHS member at the USA College of Medicine.
“The most memorable part of the day was seeing the reactions of the patients and their families when they realized we wanted to learn more about their lives outside of the hospital,” said King. “One of the biggest lessons I have learned from my patients is to count my blessings and never take a single day for granted.”
GHHS members hope that Solidarity Day will inspire healthcare providers to spend a few extra minutes getting to know their patients every day, rather than just once a year. Solidarity Day serves as a reminder of compassionate care that carries on throughout the year between patients and the hospital staff.
The GHHS Solidarity Day for Compassionate Patient Care was initiated after the 2011 shootings in Tucson, Ariz., to honor the humanistic actions of Dr. Randall Friese, the trauma surgeon who first treated Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. The “Tell Me More” project was developed in 2014 by GHHS chapter members at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai.
Click here to view more photos from USA's Solidarity Day.
To learn more about Solidarity Day, visit http://humanism-in-medicine.org/ghhs/national-conferences-events/ghhs-solidarity-day/.
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