Harvard Macy Community Blog

Fostering the ongoing connectedness of health professions educators committed to transforming health care delivery and education.

Personal Protective Equipment vs Empathy: How to Defeat the Barriers

For those of us working in healthcare, we know that empathy is a fundamental part of our everyday labor. Being able to read and even feel patients’ emotions, and adequately respond to them, is sometimes as important as being able to give patients a correct diagnosis. We also know that being empathetic sometimes entails major challenges, since it can be difficult to relate and understand someone culturally, physically, or generationally different from us. Furthermore, living in the current COVID-19 era we all share an added challenge that threatens empathy and rapport: personal protective equipment (PPE). Health care providers are now wearing a large number of PPE, which clearly obstructs our human relations. How can we respond to our patients’ emotions in an empathic way if we are covered in PPE? How can we show them our empathy? The E.M.P.A.T.H.Y.® acronym and effective verbal communication may be of help. 

Recent Comments
Guest — Pablo Gálvez

Very Useful

Very interesting and useful info. i think this kind of skills is a HUGE lack in health professionals education.
Wednesday, 11 November 2020 11:11 PM
Guest — Mariana Ramirez

No

Very interesting and important ajillo in our profesión and these days. Greetings from Chile!
Thursday, 12 November 2020 12:12 AM
Guest — Mariana Ramirez

Great article

Very interesting and important skill in our profession and on these days. Greetings from Chile
Thursday, 12 November 2020 12:12 AM
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Together, When Apart

On March 6th 2020, I wished our first year medical students good luck on their Physiology exam, and told them I hoped I would see them on Monday. Alas, on March 8th, the dreaded (but expected) email arrived. Due to COVID19, all in person classes were suspended immediately. With one day's notice, and with no preparation, we all moved to a world of Zoom. 

As course director, I quickly learned the basic features of Zoom, created meeting links, and began to lecture and facilitate small groups from my apartment. That, it turned out, was the easy part.  It soon became clear that there was a much bigger need to address: the mental health and well-being of our students. For many, class time is an integral part of their social life and gives their day purpose and structure. Now, as they were sheltering in place, with many returning to homes across the country, they were far removed from their study buddies and the camaraderie that infuses a medical school class. Moving lectures online is a matter of technology. How do we replace the “we’re all in this together” spirit of the lecture hall and small group room?

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October 2020 #MedEdPearls: Embracing the Power of Mentored Peer Review

Peer review of articles submitted to journals is the standard for determining the value of scientific scholarship for publication. As trained faculty and educators, it is part of our professional development and contribution to our scientific community to engage in peer review. However, the experience can be intimidating, isolating, and time consuming, especially when completed by an individual reviewer. Moreover, trainees or junior faculty may eschew peer review opportunities for lack of prior experience or feelings that they do not have the skills or preparation to complete a peer review independently.

 

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Guest — Kulmohan Singh

Cross Platform Mobile App Deve...

A great piece that sheds much needed light on merging technology and its impact on business as there are many new details you post... Read More
Wednesday, 02 December 2020 9:09 AM
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The Harvard Macy Institute Podcast #7: Systems of Assessment in Educational Settings

The Harvard Macy Institute Podcast aims to connect our Harvard Macy Institute community and to develop our interest in health professions education topics and literature. Our podcast is hosted by our Program for Educators in the Health Professions course faculty Victoria Brazil, and will feature interviews with health professions education authors and their research papers.

Podcast #7 explores systems of assessment. John Norcini joins host Victoria Brazil to discuss his article - What’s Next? Developing Systems of Assessment for Educational Settings. John is a senior faculty for the Harvard Macy Institute program A Systems Approach to Assessment in Health Professions Education, and this podcast is a complement to the upcoming virtual program in October.

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The Harvard Macy Institute Podcast: Learning Strategies for Health Professions – Is There a Gap from Evidence to Practice?

The Harvard Macy Institute Podcast aims to connect our Harvard Macy Institute community and to develop our interest in health professions education topics and literature. Our podcast is hosted by our Program for Educators in the Health Professions course faculty Victoria Brazil, and will feature interviews with health professions education authors and their research papers.

Podcast #6 explores evidenced based learning strategies – and whether learners and teachers practice them. Felipe Piza is first author of an article in Medical Teacher looking at this issue. He joins host Victoria Brazil and his research mentor and Harvard Macy Institute Program for Educators in Health Professions co-director Holly Gooding to discuss. 

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