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Aside from being a lifelong honor, membership in the society is a calling to focus on humanism with patients and in all interpersonal interactions beyond, as well.During the summer months following my first year of medical training, I found myself walking the halls of our city's regional medical center with its palliative care team.
Mentorship and humanism Under the leadership of Mimi Mc Evoy, M. N., associate professor of clinical family and social medicine, and Staci Pollack, M.I found out more: He was homeless, had a history of tobacco use and emphysema and was being treated (not for the first time) for alcohol withdrawal and aspiration pneumonia.Immediately, a slew of judgments crept into my conscious awareness. He could not articulate his needs or even remotely recall the date or his location, he scored abysmally when I assessed his risk for alcohol withdrawal and he constantly yelled at the staff and verbally threatened them.No one else I encountered during my third year of medical school at Albert Einstein College of Medicine struck me quite like this patient.He was propped up in the hospital bed, gasping impossibly for air, with not a hint of relief in sight.We rounded on patients throughout the hospital, with ailments ranging from malignancies to heart failure to terminal degenerative diseases.We consulted on new admissions with particularly dire prognoses, and we followed up with previous patients after they had been discharged to home or hospice.A harrowing whistle of pain escaped his lips and wove its course to my unready ears, triggering within me a stream of sorrowful thoughts.And when I thought I could bear/ no more, his piercing eyes met my own and willfully divulged the wealth of suffering contained within.And finally, after days of visits, he said quietly to me: “Thank you, and God bless.” A tradition of humanism at Einstein This story is the one I highlighted in my essay for admission to the Gold Humanism Honor Society. Gold Foundation in 2002, has been an integral part of the Einstein community since 2010.It honors medical students, residents and faculty who are committed to community service and who embody the ideals of compassion, empathy, altruism, respect and integrity in patient-centered care.