The American Medical Student Association will be hosting a virtual AMSA Town Hall this Thursday, October 22 at 8:00pmET, entitled Health During Crisis and Beyond. AMSA National’s President, Dr. Ali Bokhari, will be joined by Dr. Donald Berwick to discuss the obligations of future physicians in considering the moral and social determinants of health.
RSVP here to attend!
Dr. Berwick is a pediatrician by background, a lecturer of health care policy with the Harvard School of Medicine, Department of Health Care Policy, president emeritus and senior fellow at the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, and former administrator of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.
In his recent JAMA piece, The Moral Determinants of Health, Dr. Berwick reminds his readers:
Healers are called to heal.
When the fabric of communities upon which health depends is torn,
then healers are called to mend it. The moral law within insists so.
Improving the social determinants of health will be brought at last to a boil
only by the heat of the moral determinants of health.
Dr. Berwick provides us with an agenda for action: to call for the US ratification of basic human rights treaties; to realize in statute that healthcare is a human right; to fight climate change; to reform the US criminal justice system; to work towards immigration reform; to end hunger and homelessness; and to ensure that every person’s vote is secured and counted equally.
Our discussion on Thursday will expand upon these topics, exploring the ways in which we as future physicians might envision our role as healers and change agents during times shaped by a global pandemic, a reckoning of structural racism, and an increasingly turbulent political reality. We will be given the opportunity to expand this list of moral determinants of health, and to discuss barriers to achieving such ends.
We will be joined by AMSA’s Action Committees and Campaigns, in a moderated discussion of questions that pertain to their work and to Dr. Berwick’s moral determinants of health.
The event will close with a call to action related to AMSA’s ongoing work to fight for health justice, health equity, and health rights. Please RSVP here to participate in this unique discussion.