Friday, February 8, 2013

A Doctor's Touch

The life of a doctor is filled with new people, new patients. Every person encountered has their own hopes, dreams, dissapointments, and problems.  When I was an undergraduate student and volunteering @ a free health clinic (Health for Friends) in Norman, OK,  I worked with a doctor who taught me an invaluable lesson. She explained to me that every patient needs attention, "Don't be afraid to lay a hand on their shoulder" she said.  There is healing in physical touch.

Each physical exam we perform is a ritual between doctor and patient that has been done for ages. In this ritual there lies hope, trust, and vulnerability. 

Abraham Verghese would agree. Check out his TED talk here:

A special thanks to friend and colleague, Dr. Melissa Ordenes in Miami, Florida for passing it along!

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