Emma Hickman

Reflection Day Three

Today was incredible. We started our morning with a daunting, challenging, and utterly gorgeous hike on Bear Creek Trail. After a wonderful lunch of grilled cheese and ice cream we gathered once more at the school. One of the most important points that I took away from today’s discussions is illustrated in this quote from Lucian Leape, “The single greatest impediment to error prevention in the medical industry is that we punish people for making mistakes.” When I heard it, this made perfect sense to me. Making a mistake on an exam is just about the most effective way of learning and retaining information that I have ever experienced. Nothing ingrains a fact in my mind more than if I have previously made a mistake regarding that fact. I learn from my mistakes because of a mix of frustration, embarrassment, and sometimes even shame for making them in the first… Continue reading

Reflection Day Two

Today we started our discussions with another true and tragic story about the importance of patient safety. During our small group discussions about Michael Skolnik’s case we arrived at a really important and interesting observation that had never occurred to me before. We realized that often times patients don’t realize how much autonomy they actually have over their medical care. Every small procedure and action that the doctor takes which directly involves the patient’s body is ultimately up to the patient to accept or decline. Doctors can unfortunately sometimes get into the mindset where they believe they have the right to impose their treatment plan or course of action on the patient and if the patient declines that treatment, then they are somehow being unreasonable. I think it is absolutely vital to stress to patients that they have a choice and they have a very important role in deciding the… Continue reading

Reflection Day One

We started our week of patient safety discussions with the story of Lewis Blackman. As we watched the tragedy unfold, I felt sick watching well-meaning medical professionals ignore numerous red flags as well as the concerns of Lewis’s mother during the four days following his surgery. One quote from Lewis’s mother, Helen Haskell, stayed with me long after we finished the film and it is something I will never forget. She said if Lewis had been anywhere else but a hospital, she would have called 911 and Lewis would still be alive today. To me, this speaks to the horrifying extent to which the healthcare system has failed patients and the poisonous Wall of Silence that continues to be perpetuated. How can the place where you are supposed to be the safest be the one place where you are most isolated from the care that you need? For a person… Continue reading

Telluride Experience 2020 Dates

BRECKENRIDGE, CO:
CMF Session One*: 6/8 – 6/11
Bennathan Session Two: 6/15 – 6/18
Session Three: 6/22 – 6/25

WASHINGTON, DC/MD:
Session Four: 7/22 – 7/25

*Session exclusive to the COPIC Medical Foundation Residents.