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May 24, 1985

Teaching Physicians to Practice What They Will Preach

Author Affiliations

Stanford Center for Research in Disease Prevention Stanford Medical School Stanford, Calif

JAMA. 1985;253(20):2958-2959. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03350440036009

To the Editor.—  In reading The Journal's Nov 23/30 article entitled "Do Physicians Preach What They Practice"?,1 we wonder why medical students are not taught in medical school to practice what they will eventually be preaching? At Stanford (Calif) Medical School, we are trying to teach medical students how to take care of their own health. We have developed and are evaluating a medical school course on personal health that offers practical advice and assistance on aspects of one's own health.It becomes clear in medical school that the demands of being a physician, while providing some of the most exciting and fulfilling work, also challenge one's ability to live a healthy, wholesome, and wellrounded life. It is ironic that medical school may actually be hazardous to one's health. While students are learning to improve the health of others, they are often tearing away at their own emotional,