STAT

Opinion: Medical students definitely need to learn professionalism. But can it be taught?

Teaching medical students about professionalism will require capturing imaginations and sharpening iron. It will look less like a lecture and more like a friendship.
Plato (left) and Aristotle both struggled with the question, "Can virtue be taught?" Medical educators are struggling with something similar: "Can professionalism be taught?" Source: Picture Post/Getty Images

In a recent First Opinion, David Rothman spotlights the challenge of teaching professionalism in today’s medical schools. As president of the Institute on Medicine as a Profession, Rothman brings a needed attention to the necessity of professionalism education, of providing small grants for professionalism forums, and the power of faculty influence — among other practical suggestions. He argues that teaching professionalism isn’t necessarily difficult, it just requires intentionally:

“Today more than ever, we need physicians who are committed to the principles of professionalism. The principles themselves are well-established … Yet medical educators haven’t always been methodical and diligent in teaching these tenets to the next generation

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from STAT

STAT2 min read
Pelosi: Democrats Will Name Marquee Drug Pricing Bill For Late Rep. Cummings
Rep. Elijah Cummings, a longtime advocate for lower drug prices, passed away Thursday. Now Nancy Pelosi is naming Democrats’ drug pricing bill in his honor.
STAT4 min readSociety
An ‘Unprecedented’ Analysis Underlines Profound Failure To Study African Genomes
It has become the geneticist’s version of, “What, me not inclusive? But I have a black friend!” In the case of modern studies of DNA, researchers called to task for studying mainly European populations often defend themselves by pointing out that the
STAT3 min read
Opinion: CBO Estimate On Pelosi Drug Bill Misses Its Long-term Impact On Health
The CBO estimate on Speaker Nancy Pelosi's drug pricing bill misses its long-term impact on health.