Just a Spoonful of Humanities Makes the Medicine Go Down: Introducing Literature into a Family Medicine Clerkship

Johanna Shapiro, Alexandra Duke, John Boker & C Sue Ahearn

Three-quarters of US medical schools report the existence of material in medical humanities in their curricula, and both theoretical models and anecdotal evidence provide justification for this inclusion. The professional literature further attests to the potential for medical humanities to increase learner empathy for and insight into patients. These goals seem especially important during Year 3 of medical school, when both anecdotal reports and empirical studies document negative shifts in student empathy and communication skills. Yet little information exists12 on how to introduce the humanities at various levels of training, such as during a clerkship setting.

Read the full article