Project/blog link:Narrative Medicine BASIS Advisor: Mrs. Rachna Nath Internship location: University of Arizona College of Medicine Onsite Mentor: Dr. Jennifer Hartmark-Hill, Head of Narrative Medicine
Current health practices are so focused on treating patients by prescribing medication or performing invasive procedures that healthcare often sacrifices the emotions and value of an individual patient's life for the efficiency of technical procedures. In today's fast-paced society, medical technology and antibiotics advance but only attend to the superficial health of a patient. Narrative medicine is an effort to re-humanize healthcare by integrating empathy and an openness for narrating patient or doctor experience into clinical practices. Research shows that promoting “storytelling” in clinical environments allows for better diagnosis, stronger patient-doctor relationships, and improved patient health. In my research I plan to study the effect that narration has on practicing clinicians, such as medical students, in their ability to diagnose, increase patient return, and extrapolate new patient conditions. By developing a Likert scale and surveying three samples of medical students – a group in the Student Health Outreach for Wellness (SHOW) Clinic, a group in the Humans of SHOW program within the SHOW Clinic, and a group in a clinical setting that does not promote narrative medicine – we can determine how and to what extent “storytelling” impacts a clinician’s experience in patient care. This investigation can serve as a breakthrough in non-invasive treatments and patient care by posing the clinical environment as an emotional outlet for patients and doctors alike.