"It is only with the heart that one can see truly, for what is essential is invisible to the eye." So writes Antoine de Saint-Exupery in The Little Prince. Stories can help health professionals and students see with their hearts. Seeing with their hearts allows them to see through the time-efficiency imperatives forged by the funding clawbacks that resulted in the extreme shortages of health providers in Canada. Stories of healthcare can help the public to understand the full human dimension of both patients and health professionals, fostering their better understanding of what patients and health professionals feel and face.
The stories in this collection were encouraged through an invitation to the staff and students of the London Health Sciences Centre, requesting they consider writing a story they carry in their hearts. Fences represent the confines within which patients and health professionals find themselves. Although the stories, plays and poems in this collection are written by the nurses, physicians, physiotherapists, social workers, communication personnel, occupational therapists and trainees in one centre, they are representative of the stories in all Canadian hospitals, and of all Canadian healthcare providers.
This important volume portrays the desire in the hearts of Canadian healthcare providers to give compassionate care to those who need it. It also brings into focus the limitations on both sides of the "fence" for the medical professionals and their patients. The stories in this book resonate with wisdom and honesty and will help validate your concerns with health care and confirm your resolve to push for the need for compassionate care.
--- from the publisher
About the Author:
Jeff Nisker is a Professor of Obstetrics-Gynaecology and Oncology and Coordinator of Medical Ethics and Humanities at the Schulich School Medicine and Dentistry, University of Western Ontario. Jeff uses narrative forms, particularly theatre, to bring to the surface health-care issues for the general public, medical students, and clinicians of many disciplines. Jeff has written six plays and many short stories concerning ethics and professionalism, and to encourage compassion in health care. His plays have been performed throughout Canada, the United States and South Africa. Jeff’s research interests centre on the use of theatre as a public tool for health policy development, particularly regarding reproductive and genetic technology.