Transformation Journal
Volume 3 | Issue 5 | September/October 2019
From the Desk of
Dr. Adina Luba Kalet

I’m “drinking from a fire hose” and it is very refreshing! I am deeply grateful to Cheryl Maurana, PhD and Jean Moreland for the very “warm hand off” of the Kern Institute to both me and Venus Coates, the Institute's Administrator. Their commitment to continue to work closely with us to ensure both a smooth transition and ongoing collaboration is appreciated. In only two years, they have facilitated an impressive, substantive set of programs. Under the leadership of the five Pillar Directors; Chris Decker, MD, Cassie Ferguson, MD, Jose Franco, MD, Alexandra Harrington, MD, and Marty Muntz, MD, and staff, Cassidy Berns, Julia Schmitt, Kaicey von Stockhausen and Joan Weiss, the 35 members of the Kern Institute have touched many hundreds of students and faculty through a combination of the REACH Student Curriculum, the KINETIC3 Teaching Academy, the Transformational Ideas Initiative (TI2) Grant Program, numerous Grand Rounds and Connection Café presentations, the Interprofessional Education Curriculum, and many other substantive engagements. Together, we are aligning and productively collaborating with many at MCW, as well as with the six other schools of medicine that make up the Kern National Network. 
We of the Kern Institute aim to transform the way physicians are educated. This challenge is not for the faint of heart! This is a high stakes and very human endeavor that will be challenging and take time. Currently, our health care system faces many serious and complex challenges and is not reaching it’s potential. In this context we need to prepare future physicians who will not only survive, but thrive, problem solve creatively and find a personal path to leadership. We do not know what the health care system will look like in the future, but we do know that physicians and patients must work effectively and safely together to realize the potential.  
So, what are my personal goals for the first 90 days, you may ask? First and foremost, I want to meet and hear from you - students, faculty, staff. Please reach out so that we can be certain that the Kern gift has a remarkable impact. We will continue to convene collaborations across a large group of critical partners. We will invest in building capacity to do this work through faculty development and community engagement. With the leadership of Tavinder Ark, PhD, a medical education scholar with deep expertise in educational psychology and measurement, we will build a program of scholarship that will provide the evidence base to guide our mission and point to best practices and policies to keep the Triple Aim – Character, Competence and Caring at the center of the education of physicians. Please join us in the challenge, there is so much to do! 

Adina Luba Kalet, MD, MPH
Director, Robert D. and Patricia E. Kern Institute for the Transformation of Medical Education
Stephen and Shelagh Roell Endowed Chair
Medical College of Wisconsin
2019 Transformational
Ideas Initiative Launch Celebration
Thank you to everyone who joined us to celebrate the launch of the ten innovation projects being funded by the Kern Institute this year! Our teams presented their ideas and implementation plans to an enthusiastic audience on September 12 at the Medical College of Wisconsin. We will continue to work with the teams throughout this academic year and look forward to sharing their results with the MCW community next April.
The Kern Institute's Transformational Ideas Initiative is an annual innovation accelerator program that funds projects proposed by MCW faculty, staff, students, residents and fellows that focus on transforming medical education. Great emphasis is placed on weaving character strengthening experiences into each project, as well as how to apply those strengths as practical wisdom in a caring healthcare delivery model.

In these projects, collaboration and partnerships within MCW and with other institutions, community members and organizations are encouraged. Accepted ideas are coached through a human-centered design process led by experienced facilitators from the Kern Institute who help teams scope and finalize their project implementation plans for success.

MCW's First MedMoth:
A Huge Success!

Over 100 students, faculty, and staff gathered the evening of October 10th to experience a live storytelling event, MedMoth, organized by MCW students Zoe Bartynski, Lauren Curwick, Scott Lamm, and Jessica Sachs.

Students and faculty pictured shared their personal experiences in medicine and reflected on their purpose and meaning in pursuing a profession in medicine. Thank you to everyone who shared in this heartfelt experience.

A special thank you to Dr. Bruce Campbell, who designed and facilitated the MedMoth storytelling workshops leading up to this event. His passion for narrative writing, education and patient care was an inspiration to our storytellers and the entire MCW community.

MedMoth is a student-led initiative, proudly sponsored by the Kern Institute.

The Kern Institute Celebrates International Character Day

Students, staff and faculty at the Medical College of Wisconsin celebrated International Character Day on September 25 with cookies, character strength prompts, and fun character building exercises.

Character Day is a global event to raise awareness and encourage people to explore character development. Participants are able to join discussions that are linked online globally to share their thoughts on who they are, who they would like to be, and how to develop character strengths.

For more information on character strength development, click the button below.
Fall/Winter Event Schedule

Health Humanities in Medical Education Lecture
Advancing Character and Caring & Developing Practical Wisdom
by Craig Klugman, PhD, DePaul University
Tuesday, November 5, 2019
4:30 pm, Alumni Center, MCW
Registration not required

Kern Institute Grand Rounds
2018 MCW Common Read Book Author

In Shock: My Journey from Death to Recovery and the Redemptive Power of Hope
by Rana Awdish, MD, Author of In Shock
Thursday, November 21, 2019
9:00 am, Bolger Auditorium, MCW

Kern Institute Grand Rounds
Medical School as a Community of Character: Five Effective Techniques in the Formation of Compassionate & Flourishing Physicians
by Stephen Post, PhD, Stony Brook University
Thursday, January 23, 2020
9:00 am, Medical College of Wisconsin
Mark your calendar - registration opens soon!

Kern Institute Connection Cafe Discussion
A Kern Cafe Discussion with Dean Kerschner
by Joseph E. Kerschner, MD,  Provost, Executive Vice President, Medical College of Wisconsin; Dean, School of Medicine
Thursday, January 30, 2020
4:00 pm, Alumni Center, Medical College of Wisconsin
Mark your calendar - registration opens soon!

Kern Institute Grand Rounds
Healthcare at the Crossroads: Profession or Business?
by William Branch, Jr., MD, Emory University
Thursday, February 27, 2020
9:00 am, Medical College of Wisconsin
Mark your calendar - registration opens soon!

Kern Institute Grand Rounds
Compassionomics: The Revolutionary Scientific Evidence That Caring Makes a Difference
by Stephen Trzeciak, MD, MPH, Cooper Medical School of Rowan University
Thursday, March 19, 2020
9:00 am, Medical College of Wisconsin
Mark your calendar - registration opens soon!

Kern Institute Grand Rounds
2019 MCW Common Read Book Author
Your Heart Is the Size of Your Fist: A Doctor Reflects on Ten Years at a Refugee Clinic
by Martina Scholtens MD, MPH, University of British Columbia
Thursday, April 23, 2020
9:00 am, Medical College of Wisconsin
Mark your calendar - registration opens soon!

In Case You
Couldn't Join Us...
Kern Institute Grand Rounds
Our American Dilemma: Placing an Equity Lens on the Struggle for Diversity and Inclusion
by Will Ross, MD, MPH, Associate Dean for Diversity, Washington University School of Medicine
Thursday, August 22, 2019
Kern Institute Connection Cafe Discussion
Learner Well-Being and Mental Health at MCW: Integrating Data to Complete the Picture
by David Cipriano, PhD
Thursday, August 29, 2019
Kern Institute Grand Rounds
The Residency Explorer: Maximizing Goodness of Fit in Graduate Medical Education
by Mona Signer, MPH, President & CEO,
National Resident Matching Program
Thursday, September 19, 2019
Kern Institute Connection Cafe Discussion
Cultivating a Culture of Inclusion for Our Students
A panel discussion with Na'il Scoggins, M3; Lindsay Howard, M4, and Stuart Riepl, Data Analytics, Office of Diversity & Inclusion. Moderated by Malika Siker, MD, Associate Dean for Student Inclusion & Diversity
Thursday, September 26, 2019

MCW Professionalism Week Panel Discussion
Equity in Action: When Caring Proves Challenging

Moderator: Jose Franco, MD
Panelists: Christopher Davis, MD, Aiman Ghufran, MD, Mary Homan, MA, MSHCE, DrPH, David Nelson, PhD
Thursday, October 17, 2019

Book Suggestion
What Patients Say; What Doctors Hear
Danielle Ofri, MD, PhD

Can refocusing conversations between
doctors and their patients lead to better health?

Dr. Danielle Ofri believes that despite modern medicine’s infatuation with high-tech gadgetry, the single most powerful diagnostic tool is the doctor-patient conversation, which can uncover the lion’s share of illnesses. However, what patients say and what doctors hear are often two vastly different things.

In her book, What Patients Say; What Doctors Hear , Dr. Ofri explains that patients, anxious to convey their symptoms, feel an urgency to “make their case” to their doctors. Doctors, under pressure to be efficient, multitask while patients speak and often miss the key elements. Add in stereotypes, unconscious bias, conflicting agendas, and fear of lawsuits and the risk of misdiagnosis and medical errors multiplies dangerously.

Dr. Ofri, a physician at New York’s Bellevue Hospital and a professor at the New York University School of Medicine, delves into medical research and draws on her years of practice and observation to illuminate vital aspects of the patient-doctor relationship: Good communication lowers anxiety, raises patient confidence and makes us more likely to adhere to treatment plans. Longer visits with primary-care doctors are correlated with fewer malpractice suits. Doctors who listen well are more likely to uncover hidden causes of illness. 

Though the gulf between what patients say and what doctors hear is often wide, Dr. Ofri proves that it doesn’t have to be. Through storytelling, Dr. Ofri explores the high-stakes world of doctor-patient communication that we all navigate. Reporting on the latest research studies and interviewing scholars, doctors, and patients, Dr. Ofri reveals how better communication can lead to better health for all.
Transformation Journal is produced by MCW Kern Institute Communications
MCW Robert D. and Patricia E. Kern Institute for the Transformation of Medical Education