The Need for Compassion

It has been more than 20 years since the Association of American Medical Colleges last revised its Medical College Admission Test. The MCAT has traditionally focused on basic scientific concepts—asking, for example, how stomach acidity changes the function of the enzyme pepsin. But starting in 2015, those aspiring to the Hippocratic oath will also have […]

Are Physicians Wired for Empathy?

Even as medical researchers quantify the impact of empathy on patient care, neuroscientists are uncovering the physiological mechanisms at work when physicians connect with patients on a human level. Watching someone in a particular emotional state, recent studies suggest, sets the same neural circuitry in motion as when we ourselves experience that emotion, triggering corresponding […]