Not the Story: Medical Students’ Reflections on the Patient-Doctor Relationship

By: Jessica Bloom, University of Michigan Medical School, MD Candidate 2015

“Not the Story” is a song that hopes to evoke conversation between patients and the medical community. Its message is meant to remind listeners that patients are more than their medical condition and that their personal stories do not fit a mold based on their diagnoses. It is sung from the patient perspective and serves as a reminder to forget assumptions and embrace the humanity that led each health provider to his or her profession.

The song came about thanks to a program run by Dr. Arno Kumagai at the University of Michigan Medical School called the Family Centered Experience. In this program, students are paired with patients dealing with chronic illness. The medical students enter the homes of their volunteer families throughout the first two years of medical school to discuss issues such as the doctor-patient relationship, breaking bad news, and stigma. At the end of our second year, we are asked to create an interpretive project based on what we have learned while building these relationships. Peter Park, Sam Neher, and I came together to create this song to deliver a message that best represented our specific patient families.

If you are interested in learning more about this song, you can find our commentary in the September issue of Academic Medicine in the Medicine and the Arts section. Thank you for listening!

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7 Comments

  1. Stacie
    August 30, 2013 at 12:12 AM

    Beautiful! Thank you for sharing.

  2. Kemi
    August 30, 2013 at 5:00 PM

    Wow, this is beautiful! What a way to verbalize the breakdown of that “barrier.” Along with a push for STEM education to fuel the next generation of healthcare providers, so also should there be a celebration of humanities and particularly, the creativity to produce such work as this song reveals. I wish you can hear and see my applause. Your post, too, is very touching, and I thank you for your post and I thank you in advance for what was contributed in the upcoming issue of Academic Medicine. Best wishes with your clinical years

  3. wsumed
    September 6, 2013 at 2:30 PM

    Reblogged this on WSU MED and commented:
    Reblogged form AM Rounds

  4. Jessica
    September 7, 2013 at 1:05 AM

    Thank you all for the wonderful feedback! We really enjoyed creating this piece and are so excited to share it with the community at large.

  5. WSU MED » Not the Story: Medical Students’ Reflections on the Patient-Doctor Relationship | AM Rounds
    September 8, 2013 at 3:28 AM

    […] Not the Story: Medical Students’ Reflections on the Patient-Doctor Relationship | AM Rounds. […]

  6. Medical Students Use Music to Share Patient Voice | Educate the Young
    September 12, 2013 at 10:16 AM

    […] a recent AM Rounds post, Not the Story: Medical Students’ Reflections on the Patient-Doctor Relationship, author/singer/medical student Jessica Bloom, shares a clip of an original song inspired by the […]

  7. Medical Students Use Music to Share Patient Voice | The Doctor Weighs In
    September 16, 2013 at 4:51 AM

    […] a recent AM Rounds post, Not the Story: Medical Students’ Reflections on the Patient-Doctor Relationship, author/singer/medical student Jessica Bloom, shares a clip of an original song inspired by the […]

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