“In this biomedical revolution, we need the humanities now more than ever.”

-Lloyd B. Minor, MD, Dean, Stanford University School of Medicine

Program Features and News

10/19/16, Scope
--Stanford medical student illustrates mnemonics
In this Q&A, second-year medical student Nick Love (BEMH Medscholar) discusses a set of illustrated mnemonics he has created to give students a more entertaining way to memorize anatomy. Audrey Shafer, professor of anesthesiology, perioperative and pain medicine at the Palo Alto Veterans Affairs Health Care System and director of Stanford’s Medicine & the Muse Program, and Sam Rodriguez, clinical assistant professor of anesthesiology, perioperative and pain medicine, are referenced here.

10/14/16, Scope
--Physician-writers reflect on uncertainty in medicine
"I don’t know: Uncertainty in medicine,” was the theme of this year's Stanford’s Pegasus Physician Writers reader’s forum held last month. Session moderator Ali Tahvildari, with the Department of Radiology; Jessica Gold, clinical instructor of pediatrics; and medical resident Matt Stevenson, are quoted in this post by Jacqueline Genovese (Assistant Director, Medicine and the Muse)

Congratulations to Jessi Gold (Pegasus Physician member) on the publication of "Inpatient Psychiatry: Not All Needles, Drugs, and Locks" on Huffington Post.

Congratulations to Dr. Lucy Kalanithi on winning the inaugural Consano Ripples of Hope Award! Dr. Ward Trueblood (Pegasus Physician member) is featured in the tribute video.  

Stanford Medicine and the Muse Program recently hosted a two-day What's Your Story? Workshop for Stanford Medical Students (with generous support from the Drs. Ben and A. Jess Shenson Funds and The Marmor Foundation). Please visit the Past Events section on our Writers' Workshops and Event page for additional photos.

09/14/16, ABC News
--Parkinson's patients take to the dance floor
ABC News San Francisco profiled the new dance studio and program at Stanford's Neuroscience Health Center where Parkinson's patients work with professional dancer Damara Vita Ganley. The program called Dance for PD is run by Dr. Helen Bronte-Stewart (Medicine & the Muse affiliated faculty member), who directs the Stanford Movement Disorders Center.

Congratulations to Abraham Verghese, MD (professor of medicine at the Stanford School of Medicine, critically acclaimed author, and Medicine and the Muse affiliated faculty member) will be awarded a National Humanities Medal. He will be honored at a White House ceremony for helping to deepen the nation’s understanding of the human experience.

Stanford Medicine News article
NBC News article
The American Bazaar article

Congratulations to Christine Jette, MD for the publication of her piece, Death Without Dignity, in California Society of Anesthesiologists Online First blog.

Jessi Gold (Pegasus Physician member) won 1st place in the first annual Psychiatric Times writer's contest with her piece, The Mirror!

The Stanford Palliative Care Section is pleased to announce the first annual Kalanithi Fiction Award (Dr Abraham Verghese will be one of the judges).

Contest is open to all. Please see flyer for further information.

Congratulations to Jason Nagata (Med Writers Workshop participant) on the publication of "Until Death Do Us Part" in the Journal of Palliative Medicine!

Dr. Anya Griffin's photovoice project, Picturing Pain, (funded by Medicine and the Muse grant) was featured in the Spring 2016 Anesthesia Gas Pipeline.

Click HERE to read about the 4th Annual Arts and Anesthesia Soiree, organized by Audrey Shafer.

08/09/16, Inside Stanford Medicine
--Video about neurosurgeon facing death nominated for Emmy
 A documentary about the late neurosurgeon Paul Kalanithi’s perception of time while living with cancer has been nominated for a News and Documentary Emmy Award; the video was produced by Mark Hanlon, video director for the School of Medicine.

07/29/16, Pulse
--A White Girl Grows in Philadelphia
Audrey Shafer writes about how growing up with diversity lead her to feeling at home at the Palo Alto VA Hospital.

07/21/16, Nautilus
--Ingenious: Jonathan Berger
Kevin Berger interviews Jonathan Berger, The Denning Family Provostial Professor in the Department of Music and Medicine & the Muse affiliated faculty member.

KZSU 90.1FM broadcast and recorded the July 14th Pegasus Physician Writer’s Forum

06/29/16, All Things Considered (NPR)
Samuel Rodriguez, clinical associate professor of anesthesia, and Thomas Caruso, clinical associate professor of anesthesia, have developed the Bedside Entertainment and Relaxation Theatre (BERT) in efforts to reduce anxiety in children during their moments before surgery. Rodriguez and Caruso are featured here and in an accompanying Kaiser Health News video.

BEMH graduate, Scott Rodriguez, won the 2016 Barbour Award from the Stanford Dept of Medicine. Scott is now in the residency program in Medicine/Primary Care at Dartmouth. Congratulations Scott!


06/15/16, Scope
--Becoming doctors: a podcast featuring Stanford medical students is revived
Becoming Doctors, a podcast that features the stories of medical students in the School of Medicine, has been revived with a focus on primary care. In this Q&A, Emily Lines, a medical student who spearheads the podcast, discusses the series. Becoming Doctors is funded by a Stanford Medical Scholars grant, awarded by the Scholarly Concentration in Biomedical Ethics and the Medical Humanities.

Congratulations to Audrey Shafer on the recent publication of her poem, "Memorial Day", in JAMA! Her poem is a tribute to VA patients - and inspired by perioperative medicine rounds and a painting, 1946 by Christopher Brown.

05/17/16, Stanford Medicine News Center
Tacy Framhein and Charlene Rotandi have been named winners of the Anne G. Crowe Spirit Award, and Teresa Burk and Jacqueline Genovese received the Inspiring Change Leadership Award.


05/11/16, Scope
--“What a lift to one’s morale”: Stanford physicians take time from busy schedules to discuss art
This post by Jacqueline Genovese highlights the Faculty Art Engagement Series, a three part series of discussions in art founded by Nawal Atwan Johansen, clinical assistant professor of medicine, and Byrant Lin, clinical assistant professor of medicine. Eva Weinlander, clinical assistant professor of medicine, and Sara Gandy, clinical associate professor of psychology, are quoted here.

2016 Medicine & the Muse Symposium Photos

Click on an image to enlarge

04/08/16, Scope
--Writer Anne Lamott headlines annual Medicine & Muse showcase
Medicine & the Muse, an annual event that celebrates art and medicine, took place last Thursday. This post includes highlights from the conversation between author Anne Lamott and Paul Costello, chief communications officer for the School of Medicine.  

Dr. Alfred Paul Spivack
07.26.1928 – 04.23.2016
The Medicine and the Muse community extends condolences to the family and friends of Dr. Al Spivack, Stanford Clinical Professor Emeritus of Medicine. Al passed away suddenly at the Vi Palo Alto. Al founded the Coronary Care Unit at Stanford, championed the role of nurses, and mentored many students and trainees. His fused ceramic-glass art works were featured in an exhibit at LKSC, and his photographs of underwater life were exhibited at the Vi. He was an active member of the Stanford School of Medicine Art Committee, and celebrated many Medicine and the Muse events, including the Symposium on April 14th 2016. He was keenly interested in the intersections of art and medicine. We miss Al – his brilliance, innovation, humor, kindness and grace.

Upcoming Events

Second Annual Stanford Medicine Art Engagement Series
Presented by The Medicine & Muse Program and the WellMD Center

October 13: 5:30pm-7:00pm
Aimee Shapiro (Director of Programming and Engagement) will lead a special tour of the
Anderson Collection at Stanford

November 9: 6:00pm-7:30pm
Music and Poetry with Stanford’s St. Lawrence String Quartet and Pegasus Physician Writers

December 10: 12:00pm-3:00pm
Family Pop-Up: Make Your Own Soundsuit

re:imagine: End of Life
October 24-30, 3016
San Francisco, CA
RSVP to each event separately.

Laurel Braitman (Medicine and the Muse Writer-in-Residence) will present at Memento Mori on Oct. 25 at 8:00pm. RSVP here.

UNAFF 2016 Compass for a Better World
Friday, October 28 (at Stanford)
Li Ka Shing Center, Room 130
Admission is free for Stanford students
Click HERE to purchase tickes

The Medicine & the Muse Program at Stanford presents:
An Evening of Poetry and Music
The St. Lawrence String Quartet
& Stanford Pegasus Physician Writers

November 9th, 2016, 6pm-7:30pm
The Bing Concert Hall Atrium
Limited seating

Come hear the music of Stanford’s resident string quartet, and poetry inspired by their music, written by Stanford Physicians and Medical Students.

Stanford Med Writers Forum, featuring readings by The Pegasus Physician Writers at Stanford:
"Physician - Heal Thyself!: Taking Care of Yourself While Caring for Others"

Thursday, January 12, 2017, 5:30pm
Cantor Arts Center
Free and open to the public

RESCHEDULED Saturday Workshop with Dr. Sharon Bray
January 28, 2017, from 8:45am - 4:00pm
Home of Audrey Shafer (Mountain View)

This is Dr. Sharon Bray's final writing workshop before retirement!
Open to anyone with a connection to the medical school or affiliated hospitals (including alumni, faculty, staff, house staff, students). Priority will be given to medical students, house staff, and first-time participants. The workshops are free, but space is limited and sign-up is required. No writing experience required. Supportive environment.

April 27, 2017

MEDICINE and the MUSE: An Arts, Humanities, and Medicine Symposium
Stanford School of Medicine

Featured Speaker: David Leventhal (Director, Dance for PD [Parkinson's Disease])

Upcoming Stanford Physician Writers Book Readings and Signings at the Stanford Bookstore