April 20, 2019

Creativity in Medicine


This is a daylong symposium to celebrate creativity in medicine. Join creative medical colleagues as they discuss their work as artists, writers, activists, designers, entrepreneurs, musicians, podcasters, and more! Hear a live podcast taping, get inspired from workshops on everything from narrative medicine to medical improv, and attend or participate in a story slam! Final program will be posted on our conference page; we will keep all registrants updated as speakers are added. Please contact with any questions about registration.

Program Outline:

8:30-9:00 Registration & Breakfast

9:00-9:15 Welcome

9:15-10:00 Keynote Speaker: Dr. Emily Silverman, host and creator of The Nocturnists physician storytelling event and podcast series, and academic hospitalist at Zuckerberg San Francisco General Hospital

10:00-10:15 Coffee Break

10:15-11:00 Panel: How to Keep Creativity A Part of Your Medical Career

Including: Dr. Bennett Lorber, artist and infectious disease doctor at Temple University

Dr. Resa Lewiss, innovator in point-of-care ultrasound and co-founder of SonoGames

Dr. Chen Zhou, psychiatry resident and artist at Jefferson

Dr. Kathryn Ko, MD, MFA, painter and neurosurgeon at Kings County Hospital

Dr. Fran Nadel, pediatric emergency medicine physician at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and YA writer

11:00-12:00 Workshops I

Including: "How to Pitch your Narrative to Get Published" with Dr. Jeffrey Millstein, internal medicine physician and writer at Penn Medicine, Dr. Jason Han, cardiothoracic surgery resident and writer at Penn Medicine, and Dr. Jules Lipoff, screenwriter and Penn dermatologist

"Anatomy and Art: A Drawing Workshop" with Penn student-artists Lizz Card and Liz Upton

"Literature and Reflection: A Narrative Medicine Group" with Dr. Madhura Pradhan, nephrologist at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), Dr. Suzanna MacFarland, oncologist at CHOP, and Dr. Sheila Quinn, adolescent medicine physician at Penn

"Theater in Medicine: A Workshop"

12:00-1:00 Lunch, Networking & Art Exhibits

Once you register, email Liz Upton ( if you are interested in submitting an art piece for the exhibit and/or our website.

1:00-2:00 Panel: Activism in Medicine

Including: Dorothy Charles, Penn Med student and co-founder of White Coats for Black Lives

Dr. Dara Kass, emergency medicine physician, advocate for women in medicine, founder of FemInEM

Dr. Alisa Gutman, founder and medical director of Philadelphia Human Rights Clinic and psychiatrist at Penn Medicine

Dr. Jeanmarie Perrone, emergency medicine physician and director of division of medical toxicology at Penn, worker for safer opioid treatment

2:00-3:00 Live Podcast Taping

With Penn student Shiv Nadkarni and NYU med student Darlina Liu, producers of the Doctors Who Create podcast

3:00-3:45 Workshops II

Including: "Using Narratives to Combat Implicit Bias in Medicine" with Dr. George Dalembert, National Clinician Scholar and pediatrician at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

"Comic Storytelling in Medicine" with Dr. Ben Schwartz, staff cartoonist at The New Yorker

"Creative Ways to Listen to Patients" with Aaron Levy, executive director and chief curator at Slought and director of the Health Ecologies Lab at Penn, and Alex Chen, MD-PhD candidate in anthropology at Penn

"Visualizing Health Stories" with Dr. Chethan Sarabu, Stanford pediatrician and Director of Clinical Informatics at

"Creating Art from your Work" with Dr. Kit Shaffer, radiologist and artist at Boston University

3:45-4:45 Story Slam - theme: "Feeling Like an Outsider in Medicine"

Once you register, please email if you are interested in telling an 8-minute story related to this theme.

4:45-5:00 Closing and Thank You

We will update our conference page as more speakers are confirmed. Signup for workshops will be emailed to those who are registered closer to event date; attending your top choice workshop is not guaranteed, and events subject to change.

Thank you to our sponsors:
The College of Physicians of Philadelphia
The Delaware Valley Medical Student Wellness Collaborative
The Arnold P. Gold Foundation and Penn Gold Humanism Honor Society
The Philadelphia Museum of Art
The Penn Medicine Medical Student Government

If you would like to sponsor this event, please email


The Mütter Museum helps the public appreciate the mysteries and beauty of the human body while understanding the history of diagnosis and treatment of disease.

  • 19 S 22nd Street
  • Philadelphia, PA 19103
Get Directions
  • Monday through Sunday
  • 10am–5pm
  • We are closed on Thanksgiving, December 24, December 25 and January 1