Glasgow University Medical Arts and Humanities Student Event
On the 19th November, the Glasgow University Medical Arts and Humanities society hosted an event entitled “Stories: Dying and End of Life Care”. The aim of this event was to bring together experts from a variety of fields including anthropology, palliative medicine, general practice, chaplaincy and art. These specialists were invited to bring a piece of art or literature, which they used to stimulate group discussions and reflections about death and dying.
Feedback from both students (not only medical students, but students from different disciplines) and guest experts was positive, with many commenting that medical students and society are not always comfortable talking about death due to its taboo nature, despite its ubiquity in everyday life and medicine in particular. The hope was that this event could utilise the power of arts and humanities to promote discussion about dying, thus making students more open to talking about death and dying. This event followed on from our event last year which handled another taboo topic, abortion, and invited a platform to discuss, reflect and learn. Again using arts and humanities, we hope to host more events about topics rarely discussed in medical school – such as LGBT healthcare – in the future.