Question for Albert Einstein students/residents

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10+ Year Member
Aug 30, 2009
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WTF is this? Social workers shadowing med students and residents on rounds to teach them "compassion and humanity"?

What a joke.

Please tell me this was a one time experiment and not really a part of the curriculum up there.

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Maybe you could help me out with what exactly I'm supposed to be enraged about. This is really a weak point for a lot of doctors and if done right it could be hugely beneficial.

It's not like social workers have been put in charge of the basic sciences curriculum.
I go to Einstein, our "touchy" feely course is led by both a social worker who has lots of psych. background and a Family MD.

What makes the social worker who has interacted with a lot of patients in very tough situations (you don't become a social work case unless you are pretty disadvantaged) any less qualified to coach physicians in training on communication skills.

People learn the basic sciences not from only MD's but also from PhD's, so what is the big deal about a social worker adding his expertise in patient interaction?

Before coming to medical school I worked at a huge well known HMO. Docs who were having problems with their bedside manner were sent to "sensitivity" training by people who were coaches on interpersonal interactions. They were not MD's but were instead were professionals who helped develop "personal" skills. The program was widely successful. So do you really have to be an MD to coach someone on interpersonal skills? I think not~
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I think it sounds like a brilliant idea, not sure why you think "it's a joke"?

What exactly is wrong with teaching doctors compassion and humanity in the setting where they actually need those skills?
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At FIU in the Neighborhood Help program they are paired with a social worker (or a grad student in that area). I don't see anything wrong with that.