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Solidarity Week for Compassionate Care taking place at UMass Medical School

School of Medicine chapter of the Gold Humanism Honor Society hosting activities and events Feb. 10 to 14

By Sandra Gray

UMass Medical School Communications

February 06, 2020

The UMass Medical School chapter of the Gold Humanism Honor Society will again participate in the national observance of Solidarity Week for Compassionate Patient Care. Solidarity Week will be held across the nation Monday, Feb. 10, through Friday, Feb. 14, to celebrate the dedication of Gold Humanism Honor Society chapters, medical schools and patient care institutions to providing compassionate, patient-centered care.

“Delivering compassionate care is one of the pillars of the UMass Medical School community,” said GHHS member and Solidarity Week student lead Alice Lu, SOM ’20. “Every year, the Gold Humanism Honor Society hosts a week of events to reflect on the human connections in medicine and what delivering humanistic, compassionate care means.”

Daily activities

Monday, Feb. 10: Random Acts of Kindness Day
To recognize the small things like a smile that make UMass Medical School a center of warmth and joy, students, patients, faculty, staff and visitors can share random acts of kindness they witnessed while on campus. Blank notecards will be available in the UMass Memorial Medical Center – University Campus hospital lobby and at information tables in the UMass Memorial Medical Center – University and Memorial Campus cafeterias. Random acts of kindness can also be posted on Twitter using the official @UMassMedical handle and tags #SolidarityWeek, #GHHS and #UMassActsofKindness.

Tuesday, Feb. 11: Wellness Day
Health care providers must attend to their own well-being in order to provide compassionate patient care. Wellness Day will feature yoga and wellness sessions from noon to 1 p.m. in the Blais Pavilion on the first floor of the Lazare Research Building first floor; and from 7:15 to 8:15 p.m. in the Multipurpose Room on the first floor of the Albert Sherman Center. A limited number of yoga mats will be available, or attendees can bring their own.

Wednesday, Feb. 12: Gratitude Day
This is a day to thank someone who has made a difference, big or small. Thank you cards with envelopes will be available at the UMass Memorial Medical Center – University and Memorial campus cafeterias.

Thursday, Feb. 13: Movie Night
The Frontline documentary “Being Mortal,” in which renowned author and surgeon Atul Gawande, MD, explores how doctors care for patients who are seriously ill and nearing the end of their lives, will be screened. Following the film, Jennifer Reidy, MD, associate professor of community medicine & family health and chief of the Division of Palliative Care, will lead a discussion on providing compassionate care for seriously ill patients. The event takes place in the Faculty Conference Room from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. with refreshments provided.

Friday, Feb. 14: Carnations for Compassion and A Celebration of Creativity in Medicine
Stop by the Lamar Soutter Library to grab a free carnation to hand to a patient on Valentine’s Day.

Weeklong activities

Humanistic BINGO: Learning Community members can earn points toward the House Cup. Medical students can pick up a Humanistic Bingo sheet in the Lamar Soutter Library or at other events during Solidarity Week any time during the week, complete all the tasks, and submit to be entered in a raffle for prizes. Completed sheets can be submitted at the Lamar Soutter Library or other events during Solidarity Week. The raffle will be drawn on Monday, Feb. 17; winners will be notified by email.

Narratives in Medicine Contest: In order to encourage dialogue about humanism and compassion in medicine, students, medical staff and patients are asked to submit written or multimedia reflections on humanistic moments in their own health care or medical journeys. The contest is open to everyone. All entries will be displayed and may be featured on The Interstitium, a UMMS student-run blog that focuses on humanism in medicine. Two $50 gift cards will be awarded for the top narrative and multimedia pieces. Entries should be submitted via email to by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 12; entrants should indicate if they are comfortable having their pieces published. Winners will be notified via email on Friday, Feb. 14, and announced on The Interstitium.

Related story on UMassMedNow:
Gold Humanism Honor Society at UMass Medical School inducts 24 students