Recess Rehash: Emily Silverman, MD, and The Nocturnists

A live stage show featuring the stories of healthcare providers is now a podcast you’ll love.

The day-to-day of internship, residency, and an MD career doesn’t allow much time to process the effect it’s having on the practitioner. Rushing from one patient to the next, putting out the fires even while drinking from the firehose, and being selfless in service to the patients’ needs means that one’s own stories are buried, neglected. More and more, however, medicine is acknowledging the need for practitioners to examine and tell their stories so that they can learn from them, teach their lessons to others, and show colleagues that they are not alone. In 2015 Dr. Emily Silverman was in her second year of her internal medicine residency at UCSF. She found herself with a little more time following her frenetic intern year, and with her own stories that had gone untold and unexamined. She started to write, first in a blog she called The Nocturnists. Then, in 2016 she organized the first live storytelling session with her colleagues.

Now, in 2018, those live sessions–held in theaters with fun music and a bar, but most importantly, distant from the hospital– are playing to sellout crowds. Not only do the shows allow for catharsis, but for community. And because Dr. Silverman isn’t ready to allow The University of Iowa to be a satellite venue (and believe us, we asked), we’re grateful that The Nocturnists is also a podcast! Each episode feature a piece from the live show, followed by a relaxed, thoughtful discussion between Dr. Silverman and the storyteller. Her email to Dave earlier this spring to tell The Short Coats about The Nocturnists was a wonderful break from the usual pitches for Caribbean med schools and Ivy League pay-to-play programs; and it gave Kylie Miller, Brendan George, Marisa Evers, and Sanjeeva Weerasinghe a great opportunity to discuss what it is The Nocturnists are thinking about.

Photo: http://thenocturnists.com/team/

On The Short Coat Podcast, medical students from the University of Iowa and their co-host Dave Etler discuss news, fresh views, helpful clues, and interviews. Hear new episodes on iTunes and the Short Coat Podcast website every Thursday, republished Fridays on the Student Doctor Network. 

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