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8th Annual Geneva R. Johnson Forum on Innovations in Physical Therapy Education

Friday, October 22, 2021
ELC 2021, Atlanta, Georgia

PART I - Cultivating the Habits at the Heart of Patient Care: Compassion, Vulnerability, and Imagination

Keynote description: The best clinicians know that caring well for patients requires more than technical skill. Yet, too often this “something more” is reduced to ideas about “soft skills” or “bedside manner.” As a result, qualities like empathy, vulnerability, and connection—that is, habits of the heart—are seen as extraneous to the “real” work of patient care. This talk aims to show how habits of the heart are not mere “add ons” to clinical care but are essential to the everyday practice of assessing, diagnosing, and treating patients—and asks us to consider whether and how these habits can be cultivated among current and future clinicians.

Bio: Nicole Piemonte is the Assistant Dean for Student Affairs and a faculty member in the Department of Medical Humanities at Creighton University School of Medicine, Phoenix Regional Campus. She also holds the Peekie Nash Carpenter Endowed Chair in Medicine at Creighton University. Nicole received her PhD in Medical Humanities from The University of Texas Medical Branch where she studied continental philosophy, medical ethics, literature and medicine, and medical pedagogy. Her current teaching and research focus on incorporating the humanities into medical education in order to cultivate future physicians who are attuned to suffering, mortality, vulnerability, and social justice. Her first book, Afflicted: How Vulnerability Can Heal Medical Education and Practice, was published in January 2018 with The MIT Press, and her second book with The MIT Press, Death and Dying, will be released in September 2021


IGNITE talks:

  • Chad Jackson, PT, DPT, EdD - Program Director and Associate Professor, Doctor of Physical Therapy Program, University of the Incarnate Word, San Antonio, TX, "Having ‘Heart’ is Good, Now What?"

  • Natalie Weeks O’Neal, PT, DPT - Program Director, PTA program, Pima Medical Institute, Las Vegas, Nevada, "Compassion & Empathy - Walk a Mile in my Moccasins"

  • Sarah Blanton, PT, DPT - Professor, Division of Physical Therapy, Department of Rehabilitation Science, Emory University, Atlanta, GA, and Editor-in-Chief, Journal of Humanities in Rehabilitation, "Navigating the Inner Landscape: Can Humanities Be a Compass?"

PART II - GRJ Forum Panel Discussion

  • Caroline Goulet, PT, PhD, University of the Incarnate Word, San Antonio, TX


  • Nicole Piemonte, PhD, Creighton University, Omaha, NE

  • Gail Jensen, PT, PhD, FAPTA, FNAP, Creighton University, Omaha, NE

  • Bruce Greenfield, PT, PhD, FNAP, FAPTA, Emory University, Atlanta, GA

  • Steven Chesbro, PT, PhD, Vice President of Education, APTA, Alexandria, VA

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