“Medicine & Horsemanship is a very physical experience with immediate feedback on how physician behavior and prejudices affect the experience of a clinical visit.” ~Dr. Christina Sheu
The Medicine and Horsemanship program trains healthcare students and practitioners to develop the nuances of communication, trust and awareness in order to create strong, healthy provider-patient relationships.
Similar programs have been implemented for nearly 10 years in medical schools at Stanford University, the University of Arizona and most recently at University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey.
Interaction with horses and obtaining the desired response requires an appreciation of both verbal and non-verbal messages and how we communicate them. It requires patience, gentleness, self-confidence, sensitivity, focus, and awareness. Through honest, immediate feedback horses are able to make us acutely aware of the signals and intents we convey, both positive and negative.
It’s no secret that working in the health sciences requires high levels of cognitive ability. However, the fundamental responsibility of navigating and developing the subtleties of “bedside manner” is left up to the individual. It’s the combination of both high intellect and high emotional intelligence that will propel you forward to clinical excellence.
Benefits to Health Care Professionals
- Improve non-verbal communication through immediate, clear feedback
- Identify appropriate boundaries in self and others
- Build awareness of congruency between intention and behavior
- Cultivate attention, mindfulness (being present) and the ability to focus
- Develop confidence by confronting fear in self and others
- Increase emotional intelligence
Anyone in the healthcare field will benefit including, but not limited to:
- Medical, nursing and dental school students
- Physician Assistants
- Physical Therapists
- Emergency Medical Technicians
The Medicine & Horsemanship program effectively addresses five of the six ACGME competencies.
√ Patient care
√ Interpersonal skills & communication
√ Practice based learning & improvement
√ Systems based practice (teams)
√ Medical knowledge
Medicine and Horsemanship is taught in a ranch setting in half day or full day sessions. It is a non-riding program and no previous horse is experience is required.
Kathy Taylor is available to speak to your group or organization about how horses can improve communication, increase emotional intelligence and develop better leaders. For more information please visit the Speaking page or download a PDF here.