This issue of SGU Gold contains a robust collection of writings from SGU students, many of whom have participated in the narrative medicine / medical humanities workshops held at NYULutheran Medical Center, Overlook Hospital, and St. Barnabas Medical Center. If you have not yet taken one of these workshops, I strongly encourage you to do so.
Though the individual selections span a wide variety of circumstances and perspectives, they share a common theme of introspection and reflection. Some are inspiring, some are thought-provoking, and others are heartbreaking but they are all written with sincerity and forthrightness. Taking the time to connect more fully with your own thoughts and feelings regarding your experiences as a medical student as well as empathizing with your patients can be cathartic and will help make you a better doctor.
The publication of this issue coincides with the tail end of the Gold Humanism Honor Society "Solidarity Week for Compassionate Care." Originally conceived by the GHHS as a single day event for healthcare facilities, medical schools, and other such institutions to advocate the importance of treating patients with dignity and kindness as well as spotlight the continuing need to improve patient safety and lower healthcare costs, Solidarity Day was officially acknowledged by the Senate and included on the Congressional Calendar as of 2013. Many GHHS chapters have since expanded this initiative to span an entire week.
One change from the previous issue of SGU Gold is the addition of "Supplemental Notes" accompanying some of the pieces. This is explanatory information, usually from the author, that clarifies or enhances the meaning of the selection. In some cases, I have edited this information for content or length. If there are errors in either the notes or the selections themselves, the buck, as they say, stops here.
Steven B. Orkin
Editor, SGU Gold