Transversal Challenges

Communication

Applied Narrative Medicine

22-T06
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June 20th 2022 - July 11th 2022
COURSE COORDINATORS
Ana Sofia Carvalho (Bioethics, PhD) , 
Susana Magalhães (PhD)
COURSE PRESENTATION
This course that will provide you with advance training in narrative skills in healthcare. You will get to know the fundamentals and the tools of Narrative Medicine, with the aim of applying them in ethical decision making and in your interaction with patients, relatives and other health professionals. Moreover, the course will give you the opportunity to develop self-reflexive and communicative skills, which contribute to more effective and rewarding health care practices.

AHED launched the course on Narrative Medicine out of the conviction that this is the right time to revisit medical humanities, not as “soft stuff”, but as the pillars of effective person-centred healthcare: “In 2000, I coined the name “Narrative Medicine” (…), being careful to choose a name that would not immediately drive away my clinician colleagues the way the word “humanities” could. (…) We tried to legitimate the inclusion of narrative knowledge and methods within a health care practice.” (Charon 2001, DasGupta et al, 2006). Narrative Medicine is here understood as the practice of healthcare with narrative skills that enable the professionals to recognize the suffering of others and of themselves; to interpret verbal and non-verbal illness narratives; to be moved to action in such a way that personhood is relocated within patienthood and professionalism.

The practice of Narrative Medicine requires reconceptualizing terms, paying attention to language, with particular emphasis on metaphors, and being aware of the impact of gestures and attitudes on the way we act within the ecosystem of healthcare. Covid-19 has raised ethical concerns that need to be addressed urgently. These concerns are mainly related to communication gaps, hard ethical decision-making and difficulties in dealing with Death, Uncertainty/Errors and Public Health Policies. In order to tackle the gaps made visible by the pandemic, health professionals need safe spaces where they can reflect and share their perceptions, believes and knowledge.

This Course provides the tools and the knowledge required to build health care practices that take better care of patients/their relatives and of health professionals.
TARGET AUDIENCE
This course is intended for all healthcare stakeholders: Health professionals, Medical, Nursing and other Health Sciences Course Students, Residents, Biomedical Researchers, Patients and Caregivers, Professionals and Academics of Bioethics, Philosophy, Literature, Sociology, Humanities.
LEARNING OBJECTIVES >> KNOWLEDGE AND SKILLS TO DEVELOP
  1. To acquire accurate knowledge on the theory, concepts and tools of narrative medicine and to understand the differences and similarities between narrative medicine, palliative care and patient-centred care 
  2. To be able to deliberate on ethical issues by using a narrative ethics approach 
  3. To develop “narrative sensitivity” to different illness representations and to be able to apply narrative skills to understand what really matters to patients and their caregivers
  4. To practice reflective writing, attentive listening and sharing skills in order to improve the quality of care, both from the patients’ and the healthcare professionals’ points of view
  5. To be able to write parallel charts
  6. To promote safe spaces, where on can give suggestions to improve the ethical environment of one’s ownorganization and to change work practices
ADMISSION CRITERIA
Applicants will be selected on the basis of their CVs.
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