« Back

Professionalism Around Campus

Professionalism in Medical Education 

With the Physicians' Charter came a challenge to focus on professionalism in the training of physicians, resulting in several major medical education initiatives related to professionalism. Professionalism has been identified as a core competency which needs to be evaluated in students and residents. The Group on Educational Affairs (GEA) of the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC), the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME), and many specialty boards have identified professionalism as a priority for their attention.

White Coat Ceremony History
The first White Coat Ceremony was held on August 20, 1993 for the entering class of Columbia University's College of Physicians & Surgeons. The Honor Education Council, with the support of the dean of medicine, introduced the White Coat Ceremony to UTMB in 1996. The purpose of the ceremony is to welcome the incoming medical students and to introduce them to the profession of medicine while stressing the importance of the doctor-patient relationship. As the students don the symbolic white coat, they accept responsibility for acquiring and maintaining the knowledge and skills necessary to care for patients and commit to provide treatment in a compassionate and respectful manner. In the presence of faculty, classmates, family, and friends, each student pledges to act with honor, integrity, and selflessness when dealing with patients and colleagues. As a final testament to professional integrity, the ceremony closes with the recitation of the student-conceived Declaration of Commitment.

Honor Education Council
The Honor Education Council is a UTMB School of Medicine student-run organization formed in 1990. The Council consists of three medical students elected from each class to serve 4 year terms. Together with faculty advisors, the council works to educate medical students and faculty on issues pertaining to the ethical behavior of physicians, helps students develop an ethical decision-making process, and promotes honor and integrity within the profession. Council members serve as class advocates for integrity and professionalism issues during both the classroom and the clinical years. The council also provides a student forum for discussion of academic integrity violations and works with the school of medicine administration to actively reduce academic dishonesty. Each year the Honor Education Council sponsors the "Issues in Health Care" lecture series addressing topics concerning the medical profession. Past topics have included stem cell research, indigent health care policy, bioterrorism and health care in the prison system.  In addition, council members serve as small group facilitators for the discussion of ethical cases. The Honor Education Council also works closely with the Office of Student Affairs to host the annual White Coat Ceremony. 

Declaration of Commitment
At the time of beginning Medical School;
I solemnly pledge myself to consecrate my life to the services of humanity;
I will give to my teachers the respect and gratitude which is their due;
I will develop my skills with conscience, dignity and integrity;
The health of my patients and myself will be my first considerations;
I will honor those things that are confided in me;
I will maintain by all the means in my power, the honor and the noble traditions of the medical profession;
My colleagues will be my comrades;
I will not permit considerations of religion, nationality, race, party politics or social standings to intervene between my duty, my peers and my patients;
I will maintain the utmost respect for human life and I will not use any medical knowledge contrary to Law;
I make these promises solemnly, freely and upon my honor.
                    Used for the White Coat Ceremony at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston
                              Adopted from the Declaration of Geneva and the International Code of Medical Ethics


Excellence in Professionalism Award - Student Life

Congratulations to our January-March 2013 winner…

Jaipreet Suri (SOM)
"Jaipreet is one of the best medical students I have ever worked with. I had the pleasure of working with him during his Neonatal ICU & Surgery rotations, and I was very impressed with Jaipreet's professionalism, work ethic, and dedication to his patients. He was always the first medical student at the hospital and would record the morning labs and vitals for all our team's patients. This really lightened the workload for us residents and helped morning rounds run much more efficiently. Jaipreet was always willing to stay late and help with any floor work or to return to his patient's room to see if they had any questions and to see if there is anything he could do to make them more comfortable. His professionalism and compassion especially shined in his interactions with the patient's families in NICU. He always remembered the parents' names, as well as their baby's. He took the time to update the parents on their baby every day. When a new student started on the rotation, Jaipreet helped orient them to our daily routine and answered any questions they had. Jaipreet is also extremely well-rounded. Along with being an excellent student, he is also heavily involved in research. He is working on several research projects and has presented his work at multiple national meetings. Jaipreet was awarded the 'Daniel H. Cannon Distinguished Research Award' for the 2011-2012 year. He is also an Osler scholar and member of Gold Humanism Honor Society. He is always looking for ways to give back to the UTMB & Galveston community and is involved in several organizations and projects. Jaipreet is one of the coordinators for the Books-to-Bedside book drive that provides reading materials for the John Sealy Hospital library. He also helps organize the Anti-Tobacco Awareness Program to help educate children about the negative effects of smoking. He also volunteers at St. Vincent's and served as a student intern during the summer between his first and second year. Jaipreet is the embodiment of what a medical student should be and I strongly believe he deserves recognition. He would be an excellent recipient of this award."   (learn more at the above link).

Honor Pedge Committee Pub Night

Pub group shot

On Thursday November 7th, 2013 the  UTMB's Honor Pledge Committee hosted its "Pub Night" Alcohol Awareness event. Students enjoyed british-style fish and chips and root "beer" floats while the honor pledge committee educated them on the effects excessive drinking can have on their personal and professional lives. Students participated in a standard field sobriety test using beer goggles that demonstrated alcohol use above the legal limit of .08. Honor Pledge Committee also distributed keychains to students with student resources on campus for students dealing with alcohol dependency.

pubnight distortion