Typically held on or near Valentine’s Day, National Solidarity Day for Compassionate Care began in 2011 as a day to encourage medical schools, patient care facilities and other organizations around the country to show their support of the importance of kindness to patients.
The national Gold Humanism Honor Society office established the day to highlight the nation-wide movement promoting provider-patient relationships based on caring, personalization, and mutual respect. Momentum gathered particularly after the Senate passed a resolution in 2013 and 2014 to officially recognize Solidarity Day on the national calendar. In 2015, 95 participating organizations, including 72 chapters of the Gold Humanism Honor Society, celebrated this special day.
This year we encouraged chapters and other patient care facilities to celebrate a week of Solidarity. We had a record number of participating sites- almost 100! Many of the sites participated in our extremely successful “Tell Me More” program. Scenes from Solidarity Week 2016:
This simple but powerful project was developed in 2014 by GHHS chapter members at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai. In 2015, over 85 GHHS chapters and health care facilities throughout the U.S. and Canada participated in this easily implemented project.
Concerned that patients in medical systems are often depersonalized, medical students set forth to learn about their patients and share some of that knowledge with other care providers. After obtaining consent, GHHS members spent time learning about patients’ personal lives in order to craft signs for display over their patients’ beds. The three questions they asked were:
Patients lit up when asked about their personal lives. Students were awed by the depth and resiliency of the patients they interviewed. Everyone who entered the room – from residents, attendings, and nurses to food service, other support staff and visitors – were able to see those signs and remember that each patient is a unique individual.