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Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Moore speaks in East Sandwich, 23 August 2010

Laurie Higgins talks with Thomas Moore about his new book, Care of the Soul in Medicine under today's Wicked Local headline, "Health author, Thomas Moore, to speak in Sandwich". Moore speaks at the Quaker Friends Meetinghouse, Spring Hill Road in East Sandwich on Monday 23 August at 7 p.m. According to the interview:
"He says doctors and nurses need to understand and empathize with the fact that their patients are lying in a bed, away from their family and their work identity and frightened by their illness. In many cases, hospital personal go about their business without even telling the patient what they are doing.

"After a while you feel you’re just an object that’s being manipulated and people don’t understand that, because in the philosophy of the scientific way people are trained, the objects are what you study, so it’s not so unusual to have a patient as an object," he says. “And that’s what has to change but I tell you, it is not shifting very much at all."
Higgins includes:
"As an example he cites a visit to his cardiologist. While he sat alone in the room waiting for the doctor, he noticed a big plastic model of a diseased heart. While it might be instructional, he points out that it’s not the best way to prepare a patient for a healthy moment.

"We equate medicine with this technological, very hardware approach to life and we think that it’s so important to educate our patients to see what a heart looks like," he says. "You know I’m never going to operate on a heart. I don’t need to know that. I’d rather be in an environment where the whole place tells me, 'You come here and you’re going to become a healthier person.'"

"That’s why one of the biggest changes that he suggests is an overhaul of the actual hospital setting. He believes the body is the soul and the soul is affected by symbol, ritual and image. Entrances should be warm and welcoming so everyone who enters feels at ease. Medical settings should have beautiful art, healing music and relaxing features like water fountains. Food should be nutritious and flavorful.

Rather than being surrounded by artificial plastic, he says elemental materials like water, stone, iron, ceramic textiles and wood are better suited for true healing. And patients should be encouraged to bring comforting things from home like photographs, music and a favorite blanket or pillow."
Titcomb’s Bookshop, 432 Route 6A in East Sandwich, Massachusetts hosts this event that is free and open to the public. Books will be available for sale during the evening. For further information or to reserve a signed copy of the book if you cannot attend, contact Titcomb’s Bookshop at 508 888-2331.

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