About the Book
Advice To The Healer is for the physician who wants to learn how to be a healer. It is for the medical student, resident, physician, physician assistant, nurse practitioner as well as health care providers from other diverse fields such as optometry, podiatry, dentistry, psychological counseling and social work who would like to be let in on the secret of the art of medicine. It is for those who are "people persons" or want to be better at the physician-patient relationship.
This book is for those who believe that there is an art to medicine, but are not sure where to turn to learn where to find it, beyond the role modeling which there exemplary teachers display. By looking through the history of medicine, the author identifies some of the recurring themes of the art of medicine, as taught or displayed by some of histories greatest physicians.
The author focuses on some of the leaders of medicine including the early Greeks and Hippocrates, the medieval physicians Rhazes, Avicenna and Maimonides, Twentieth century physicians: Osler, Schweitzer and Peabody as well as some of today's modern masters: Pellegrino, Farmer and Woodward. Insights from the authors own experiences in private practice and teaching are also provided. The reader is taught by way of story telling, and in an inspirational and optimistic manner, that he (she) can also learn the technique of how to be a healer.
The physician will enjoy being let in on some of the most important tenets of the healing profession by someone who has been practicing family medicine for over two decades and who has taught students for most of this time. Dr. Richard Colgan is a Professor at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, and Director of Undergraduate Education in the Department of Family and Community Medicine, in Baltimore, Maryland. He has been recognized by his students for his teaching expertise, and was the School of Medicine's nominee to the Association of American Medical Colleges for its Humanism in medicine award. He has taught nationally and is recognized as one Baltimore's and the countries best physicians by surveys of his peers. Dr. Colgan has written numerous scientific articles, research studies, medical reviews and human interest stories in the medical literature.
Dr. Colgan admits to not having mastered the art of medicine, while convincing the reader that others have shown how we may emulate best practices of those who are recognized as having much to teach us by way of their life's works. Specific lessons on how to present a patient, practice etiquette based medicine, choosing civil behaviors as well as choosing good practice (and avoiding malpractice) are discussed. The joy of discovering our patients life stories is explored, including several stories which the author has discovered in his years of caring for patients. The reader will learn specifically what it takes to be a healer, and how to be recognized by your patients and your colleagues as someone who "knows the art".
The purpose of this book is to share with the physician the greatest lessons that histories greatest clinician educators have taught us. Dr. Colgan highlights four goals for the physician. The physician will:
- Be able to explain more of what some of histories greatest teachers of medicine ( e.g. Hippocrates and others) had to say, beyond the often quoted single quote ( e.g first do no harm).
- Understand the recurring themes of the art of medicine, such as those taught by Hippocrates: observe all, evaluate honestly, assist nature, study the patient rather then the disease; as well the lessons of other greats discussed in this book.
- Learn how to effectively and expertly present a patient in superb form and a flawless manner.
- Recognize the difference between a technician and a healer.