The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, my old stomping grounds, is hosting art workshops for local medical students – dermatology students from Harvard and med students from Brigham and Women’s Hospital. The former group is learning to hone their clinical observation skills while studying art, while the latter is learning to bring humanity to their bedside manner. And who doesn’t want more of that in a doctor? This means, among other things, developing their empathy by studying Egyptian sarcophagi and pondering the meaning of death and its implications for their patients and their loved ones. It also means learning about coping skills for themselves, such as studying Buddhist art and learning about meditation to calm their minds.
What a novel concept. Everything is connected. Everything intertwines. Hooray for these programs and for the museum.