“My documentary fellowship has generated overwhelming interest within my department and for my department.  Since starting the program, I have yet to make it through a shift in the ER without another resident or attending inquiring about my latest work, “Hey Parker, how’s your project going? I’ve got an idea for a photo for you . . .”  or “Hey Parker, I had this cool case last night. I wish you were there with your camera.” Moreover, the fellowship has become the hot topic at our (resident applicant) interview dinners.  As far as I can tell, no other graduate medical education program in the country offers such a unique program for residents.  Our candidates are simply blown away on interview day.” – Dr. Andrew Parker, Emergency Medicine

“As a resident, I didn’t always understand why some of my patients were making the decisions they were. Producing this project has made me much more patient and compassionate towards the decisions that people make.” – Dr. Alison Sweeney

“In medicine, you’re forced to consume so much data. People don’t remember data. They remember patient stories. If you can learn a disease through a patient’s story, like the ones we’re producing here, you will own that information for the rest of your life.” – Dr. Christopher Jones

“I think that this program provides an opportunity which is all too often absent in the early years of training — the opportunity to reflect on what it is we do at the hospital, clinics, anywhere we interact with patients.  And, that reflection is, within this program, a mentored, fostered reflection which is more than just thinking about what we do, but actually transforming those thoughts and feelings into a creative work which can be used to convey the powerful nature of some of life’s most stark tragedies and warmest triumphs which happen in the context of the doctor-patient relationship.  Hopefully it ends up being a program that doesn’t just influence the half-dozen or so residents who actually partake, but also the wider Duke medical community through sharing of the work produced. – Dr. Mary Hoffa

“Attention spans are fleeting, and medical concepts often defy simple explanation. I hope to use my documentary film to capture and hold the attention of my audience for just long enough to explain why infection control problems at assisted-living facilities are important and why the policy changes adopted to address these problems in North Carolina should be emulated elsewhere.” – Dr. Thomas Bender, Resident, Occupational and Environmental Medicine


“The teenagers I photographed taught me a lot, even as many of them struggled with serious challenges in their own lives. Having gone out to meet with them in their world, I came away with no neat formulations about teenage pregnancy but rather a richer, more accurate context in which to see them, and I hope, better understand their experience.” – John Moses, M.D.

“People learn using different modalities, and for some people the visual route opens the door to understanding. Even richer than teaching using documentary methods is the experience of the individual who prepares the materials, since documentary studies by their nature include rich human interactions. We learn when we take part, whether as the subject, the documentarian, or the viewer. This is a unusually meaningful project in which I'm very glad to participate." - Dr. Ross McKinney, Director of the Trent Center

Copyright © 2019 Documenting Medicine: A Program for Physicians.