Attending: Medicine, Mindfulness, and Humanity Book Review – Get This Book!

Attending: Medicine, Mindfulness, and Humanity

Attending: Medicine, Mindfulness, and Humanity

With his “deeply informed and compassionate book…Dr. Epstein tells us that it is a ‘moral imperative’ [for doctors] to do right by their patients” (New York Journal of Books).

The first book for the general public about the importance of mindfulness in medical practice, Attending is a groundbreaking, intimate exploration of how doctors approach their work with patients. From his early days as a Harvard Medical School student, Epstein saw what made good doctors great—more accur

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  1. 10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    Excellent work on mindfulness in the modern medical encounter, May 19, 2017
    By 
    -B

    Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    I originally met Dr. Epstein at a professional conference. He spoke with such wisdom and clarity that I immediately wanted to learn more about him. I am also an aspiring physician author, so he is a great inspiration to me. His book, Attending, discusses the increasingly impersonal field of allopathic medicine and some of the ways to maintain a sense of caring and passion while practicing the great art of medicine. He extends the principle of mindfulness to the medical encounter, and I was able to immediately use this in my own practice while reading the book. He tells a myriad of personal stories from both his experience as a clinician and his personal health care experiences as a patient. There is a nice balance between experience-based wisdom and evidence based research about mindfulness, mastery, and physician burnout. He writes with a crisp and flowing style, and the the book is a very quick read-only about 200 pages. I originally thought this book was going to be about mindfulness meditation, but he touches on meditation practice only briefly. What this book is really about is changing the philosophy of the medical encounter and the community and institutions which surround it. I think this is a great book for medical students, physicians, or anyone who is interested in the art of medicine and the evolving medical encounter.
  2. 10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
    5.0 out of 5 stars
    I highly recommend this book to any health care provider who wants …, February 3, 2017
    By 
    Amazon Customer (Wisconsin)

    Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    In a world where patient satisfaction (Press-Ganey results) determines profit, health care providers would be foolish to ignore the invaluable information Dr Epstein provides. As a nursing professor, I am recommending this book to all of my students. Dr. Epstein provides very practical tips that practitioners can use with patients that will improve the care they provide, thus improving both patient outcomes as well as patient satisfaction. In addition, his focus on self-reflection is pivotal to minimizing compassion fatigue in a world where physician burn out is at an all time high. I highly recommend this book to any health care provider who wants to improve his/her practice, build resilience, and become a better practitioner to the patients we care for.
  3. 5.0 out of 5 stars
    Doing my Ph.D. in Mindfulness–Wish I had this sooner!, September 25, 2018
    By 
    Dr. Kaman C. Hung (Asbury, NJ USA)

    Verified Purchase(What’s this?)
    I am going to say that this book should be on every person’s shelf. Originally I passed by this book because I had no interest in the medical profession–by trade, I am a teacher. However, full disclosure, I am working on my dissertation in Mindfulness and have purchased several books and curriculum that I am infusing into my classrooms. Some of them include Jon-Kabat Zinn’s “Full Catastrophe Living”, Broderick’s “Learning to BREATHE” curriculum, Hassad & Chambers’ “Mindful Learning”. I have many more and have been reading hundreds of pages of research articles.

    I wish I read this before I started by doctoral program more than two years ago. It is a shame that I did not have access to information like this. What I like about Epstein is that he makes it so simple. He provides anecdotes and his story is truly a personal reflection on how mindfulness has not only made him a better doctor, but a better person. Because his mindfulness practice has helped more patients than he can possibly count, he details strategies and insights that would be useful to anybody–not just those who are in the medical field.

    As I started reading this, I realized that it’s not enough to teach mindfulness in my school, or even learn about it and write a giant thesis on it… I really need to practice this myself and in doing so, I may be able to help my students and transform their lives. We hear people, but seldom do we listen to them. We don’t really think and ask what they are trying to tell us. I’m mid-career as a teacher and I find that at times I know better than my students, my parents, and sometimes even my administrators (those of you in education probably feel the same way). However, what this book has taught me is that I need to have an open-mind, because if an award-winning doctor can learn from his medical students who he says sometimes asks “annoying questions” which in light of changing his perspective become enlightening questions, then we should all be able to benefit from a more mindful practice and be able to “ATTEND” to those who matter the most.

    Truly inspiring. I will be recommending this to anyone looking to understand more about mindfulness from a secular point-of-view.

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