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March 1, 2006

The Medical Humanities and Medical Education

Author Affiliations

Letters Section Editor: Robert M. Golub, MD, Senior Editor.

JAMA. 2006;295(9):997-998. doi:10.1001/jama.295.9.997-a

To the Editor: In his article in A Piece of My Mind, Dr Campo1 delivers an eloquent plea for the medical humanities and an essay on clinician-educators. Introducing these concepts to future physicians should begin before medical school.

The place for instilling a feeling for the human condition, which is what humanities are all about, should begin in college. Students who identify themselves as “premedical” could have a program less focused on the hard sciences and far more on anthropology, history, and relevant literature. Students who think about the humanities in those impressionable college years should be better able to intertwine real human emotions with their later care of patients.