Being an outstanding physician requires more than just extensive medical knowledge and exceptional clinical skills. It also requires a strong sense of compassion and empathy in caring for patients and their families.
Melanie Golembiewski, M.D., was recognized for these essential qualities on Friday, May 28, when she received the prestigious Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award. Golembiewski's classmates and teachers selected her for the award, which was presented during the graduation ceremony for the Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine class of 2010. The ceremony was held in the Schuster Performing Arts Center in downtown Dayton.
The Arnold P. Gold Foundation sponsors the annual Humanism in Medicine Awards at more than 80 of the nation's medical schools. The foundation's goal is to improve doctor/patient relations and foster health care professionals who exhibit the highest level of respect, sensitivity and cultural competence for the patients and families they serve, and to nurture and perpetuate the tradition of the "caring doctor."
Golembiewski was chosen for the award for her "consistency in demonstrating compassion and empathy in the delivery of health care to patients and their families."
Despite the demands of her curriculum and clinical training, Golembiewski was active in many student organizations during medical school. She served as president of Wright State's chapter of the American Medical Students Association and was a member of the school's admissions committee. In her third year, Golembiewski received the John C. Gillen Award for Family Medicine. As a senior, she was inducted into the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society and the Gold Humanism Honor Society.
A native of Cleveland, Golembiewski graduated from Trinity High School in Garfield Heights before earning bachelor's degrees in nutrition and biology from the Ohio State University. Golembiewski will begin the next phase of her medical training this summer, when she will enter the Family Medicine Residency Program at University Hospitals Case Medical Center in Cleveland.
The Gold Foundation sponsors a Humanism in Medicine Award for faculty members as well. The 2010 faculty award went to Ashley K. Fernandes, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of community health and pediatrics. Fernandes is a course director for the school's Social and Ethical Issues in Medicine course, which examines the social, ethical and legal issues that accompany physicians' interactions with patients and contribute to their effectiveness as healers and professionals.