Christian Carwell

Dance, Dance

I had many conversations with my fellow med students about what going home would look like for us. We saw the ideas the residents had for their QI projects and what improvements they would like to make at their institutions, but our conversations looked different than the resident’s. Although fascinated with what we had learned, we just weren’t sure where to go from here. Something Dave said in our final reflection really helped solidify the whole week for me. He said something along the lines of “Medstar didn’t do this overnight. You aren’t expected to either. Do what you can today.”

It can feel overwhelming when you are bombarded with so much information all at once. You see success, and you want to share it, but it can be near impossible to implement all the programs etc all at once. Culture changes are not instantaneous and trying to do it… Continue reading


On the final day of orientation, I was given a single sheet of paper. We had spent the week learning about this exciting journey ahead of us, but also about the difficulties we would face. Over the next four years, we would be faced with both external and internal hardships that would put our bodies, minds and spirits to the test.

Instructed to write a letter to myself that would be given on graduation, immediately I knew what I would write to remind me of the reason I took this journey in the first place.

I had just started working in the ED /Urgent Care as a scribe. That particular night I had been working with a nurse practitioner maybe 2 weeks into starting this new job. At the time, I had no interest in the medical field. Yeah, the stuff we saw was interesting, but having been pushed by… Continue reading

Sticks and stones may break my bones…

One conversation that struck me throughout today’s discussions was on the words and phrases we use when discussing adverse events with patients. For example “review” vs “investigation.” How you talk about something can drastically change the way the other party perceives what you are saying.

Thinking about this and the power of language, I am struck by an aspect of healthcare culture that I have noticed over the last 3 years, especially working as a scribe. As such, I was kind of the fly on the wall. I was privy to many important conversations with patients, but I was also present for the not-so-important side conversations. Often times I was shocked to hear how people talked about each other- this included physicians, nurses, PCAs etc. Usually it would start as an expressed annoyance or small complaint but these conversations could easily escalate. Hardly ever did I witness the complaint being… Continue reading

Day 1: “Supposed to?”

Have you ever just looked around you and thought: “right here, today, right now, this is where I’m supposed to be?”

Now, I have a funny relationship with the phrase “supposed to.” I don’t really like it, because I feel as if it can be misconstrued and too much weight can be placed upon it. I feel as if sometimes people begin to rely on it in order to back away from decision-making or as a cop out. I don’t like the phrase “supposed to” because I feel like God can use our choices regardless of where they take us. However, at the same time, there are distinct moments in my life, that I know I had no plan in orchestrating; and this is one of them.

Honestly, I was pretty terrified to accept a position at the 2018 Napa Telluride Conference. I had never heard of anyone else attending,… Continue reading

AELPS 2022 Dates

- CMF Scholars (Week 1)*: 6/5/22 - 6/9/22
*Session exclusive to COPIC Medical Foundation Residents.
- Sorrel McElroy Scholars (Week 2): 6/12/22 - 6/16/22
- Bennathan Scholars (Week 3): 7/19/22 - 7/23/22
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