Danielle Ofri gives highly engaging lectures to both medical and non-medical audiences on a wide range of topics. There are no slides, Powerpoint, or handouts–just lively discourse and compelling human stories.
Harvard Medical School–Public Lecture on Emotions in Medicine
Dec 1, 2016, 4:30 pm
Johns Hopkins School of Medicine–Symposium on Humanity and Medicine
Dec 10, 2016
Broadway at 12th St,
New York, NY
Feb 6, 2017, 7 pm
Barnes & Noble Bookstore
Broadway and 82nd St,
New York, NY
Feb 8, 2017, 7 pm
St. Louis County Library–Medical Arts Series
1640 S. Lindbergh Blvd.
St. Louis, MO
Feb 13, 2017, 7 pm
University of Utah School of Medicine–Public Lecture on Doctor-Patient Communication
Salt Lake City, UT
March 9, 2017, 6 pm
New York, NY
March 22, 2017, 6 pm
American College of Physicians–Board of Governors
San Diego, CA
March 28, 2017
University of Missouri
The Power of Words: Despite modern medicine’s infatuation with high-tech gadgetry, the single most powerful diagnostic tool in the medical armamentarium is the doctor-patient conversation. However, what patients say and what doctors hear are often two vastly different things. Patients feel an urgency to “make their case.” Doctors multitask while patients speak and miss key elements. Add in stereotypes, unconscious bias, conflicting agendas, and fear of lawsuits and the risk of misdiagnosis and medical errors multiplies. This presentation examines whether refocusing the caregiver-patient conversation can lead to better health outcomes.
Emotions, Caregivers, and Patients: Despite our commitment to the scientific method, doctors are not nearly as rational and evidence-based as we tell ourselves that we are. Emotions permeate our clinical decision-making, whether we choose to acknowledge this or not. The presentation offers an unflinching look at the how emotions affect caregivers and the medical care they are able to give their patients.
A Culture of Safety: Patient safety is a critical issue in medicine today. There is, rightly, a strong emphasis on systems approaches to improving medical care and decreasing error. However, medicine is fundamentally a human endeavor, and in the end it is people, not systems, who cause medical errors. Without attention to the human aspects of the medical enterprise—emotions, respect, relationships—crucial aspects of patient safety will remain beyond our grasp.
Inspiration in Medicine: Disillusionment in medicine feels like it is reaching epidemic proportions. Doctors and nurses say they would never choose the field if they had to do it all over again. Medical error and burnout seem to be everywhere. But it might be too soon to close the book on the medical profession. This presentation examines the impact of disillusionment, highlighting strategies for re-engaging caregivers, combating burnout, and thriving in the new era of medicine.
Medicine Today and Tomorrow: Medicine is increasingly portrayed as a field that no one in their right mind would consider: the debt burden for medical students is gargantuan, regulations strangulate the practice of good medicine, litigious patients lurk in every corner, doctors are disillusioned in droves. Is this all really true? This presentation is geared toward an undergraduate and general audience, examining the current state of medicine, focusing on what it really means to be a doctor today, and why some of us wouldn’t give it up for the world.
Medical Error and the Ethics of Apology: As evidence mounts about the human cost of medical error, society is scrambling to find ways to contain this “epidemic.” At the heart of the issue is how to coax a culture of secrecy and guilt into the light. Do doctors and nurses have the capacity within themselves to come forward and admit these errors? This presentation explores how medical personnel face the delicate issue of apologizing to a patient, and how patients might consider the framework of medical error.
Multiculturalism and Diversity: Like all areas in our culture, medicine faces many challenges in our multicultural society. Stereotypes can subtly undermine medicine’s commitment to patient care. With a candid assessment of how biases infiltrate medicine, this presentation focuses on creative ways to bridge cultural gaps.
Technology in Medicine: Technology is transforming medicine at a breathless pace. From computerized treatment algorithms to electronic medical records, every aspect of medicine has been refashioned by the digital revolution. This presentation digs into the technologies of medicine—some ancient, some disarmingly simple, some revolutionary, and some impressively overwrought—to examine the impact of this ongoing metamorphosis, and what it means for the doctors, nurses and patients who must navigate it.
Bringing Back the Humanity to Medicine: Despite enormous advances in healthcare, patients and doctors alike are dissatisfied with their experience. So much of medicine has been boiled down to rote algorithms and assembly-line care. Seeking inspiration from the gripping narratives of urban medicine to the unlikely poetry of the ICU, this presentation probes the most fundamental aspect of medical care—how doctors and patients connect.
Medical Professionalism: Professionalism is a hot-button issue in the medical world. As the field comes under assault from all corners, health care workers can feel besieged and demoralized. Seeking inspiration from Chekhov, Sports Illustrated, and the legions of patients in a doctor’s life, this presentation strives to help caregivers avoid becoming ungrounded and losing their sense of self. An unusual look at medical professionalism.
Doctor-Writers: An Epidemic? More than any other field, medicine seems to inspire writing. Doctor-writers seem to be everywhere these days, giving rise to a new set of ethical dilemmas. This presentation illuminates the inherent connections between story-telling and medicine in a way that is accessible to a wide-ranging audience.
Malpractice and Medical Error: Lawyers tend to meet up with doctors only in the charged setting of medical malpractice, when doctors are radically changed from their usual selves. Geared toward risk managers, this presentation examines the how doctors commit errors, hide errors, and alter their medical practice because of errors. It digs deep into the harrowing experiences of physicians who’ve experienced medical error and malpractice suits, illuminating the powerful emotional challenges to all who are involved.