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Dr. Chris Colbert: “No one cares what you know if they know you do not care”

Ensuring that every patient receives the same standard of medical management and resource availability would prove to be one of the greatest measures of medical progress. Providing every patient with access to standard medical care would ultimately enhance positive patient outcome. As a part of my series about the things we can do to remain hopeful […]

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Ensuring that every patient receives the same standard of medical management and resource availability would prove to be one of the greatest measures of medical progress. Providing every patient with access to standard medical care would ultimately enhance positive patient outcome.


As a part of my series about the things we can do to remain hopeful and support each other during anxious times, I had the pleasure of interviewing Dr. Chris Colbert, DO, FACOEP, FACEP.

Christopher Markus Colbert is the Assistant Program Director of the emergency medicine residency program at the University of Illinois at Chicago with specific interest in both academic and social emergency medicine. Additionally, he is the chair of continuing medical education for the American College of Osteopathic Emergency Physicians (ACOEP), the co-chair of Illinois College of Emergency Physicians (ICEP) spring symposiums and a lieutenant colonel in the United States Army reserves. Chris has provided and moderated lectures nationally and internationally receiving awards for both speaker engagement and contribution to medical education. Dr. Colbert received his undergraduate degree from Hampton University, medical degree from Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine and is a graduate of the Midwestern University Emergency Medicine Residency Program.


Thank you so much for doing this with us! Our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you share with us the backstory about what brought you to your specific career path?

I volunteered at a local hospital at a very early age with the Red Cross. This was my first interaction with the members of the medical community. I would sit in amazement observing the humbling interaction between physician and patient. This unique and constantly evolving practice would prove to support my interest in medicine while providing a tremendous service to the community. I could not wait to become a participant in the healing community.

Is there a book that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?

The book entitled, The House of God, by Samuel Shem, MD was a lighthearted view of an intern’s journey through the first year of medical residency. This novel was the catalyst of inspiration into the daily life of a physician for many of us in the medical profession. Additionally, each chapter in this novel carries a very relatable story for all physicians. It was refreshing to identify with other medical students.

Ok, thank you for all that. Now let us move to the focus of our interview. Many people have become anxious from the dramatic jolts of the news cycle. The fears related to the coronavirus pandemic have heightened a sense of uncertainty, fear, and loneliness. From your perspective can you help our readers to see the “Light at the End of the Tunnel”? Can you share your “5 Reasons to Be Hopeful During this Corona Crisis”? If you can, please share a story or example for each.

The passion of medical education coupled with the dedication to community are reasons to be hopeful during this serious virus. Preparing for such a virus has challenged the medical community to evolve as providers and participants. Today, we have enhanced our triage capability and created smaller focus areas to overlook and ensure quality patient management.

From your experience or research what are five steps that each of us can take to effectively offer support to those around us who are feeling anxious? Can you explain?

  • First, encourage open dialogue with healthcare providers.
  • Secondly, provide a listening ear to those individuals who communicate their angst.
  • Identify ways to support healthy lifestyles and discuss healthy lifestyle choices.
  • Lastly, promote conversation and encourage other resources to assist with management of anxiety.

What are the best resources you would suggest to a person who is feeling anxious?

For anyone seeking insight and support for feelings centered around anxiety please utilize online hospital resources and additional trusted family members and/or friends.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Do you have a story about how that was relevant in your life?

My favorite quote as it pertains to medicine is stated as, “No one cares what you know if they know you do not care.” The application of this quote applies to our everyday practice. The humble position we all have as healthcare providers can sometimes be overlooked by the patients that we serve. However, it is important to always empower your patients in such humble settings and encourage dialogue to enhance and ensure patient outcome.

You are a person of great influence. If you could start a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

Ensuring that every patient receives the same standard of medical management and resource availability would prove to be one of the greatest measures of medical progress. Providing every patient with access to standard medical care would ultimately enhance positive patient outcome.

What is the best way for our readers to follow you online?

Dr. Colbert Social Media:

Instagram

Twitter

Facebook

LinkedIn

YouTube

Thank you for these fantastic insights. We wish you only continued success in your great work!

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