Dr. Jan Bonhoeffer

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COVID-19 & Vaccine Safety: What Should We Be Asking?

Almost 60 percent of Americans recently surveyed say they are willing to take new COVID-19 vaccines, but that leaves millions who are wary. Dr. Jan Bonhoeffer, Vice-Chair of Pediatric Infectious Diseases and Vaccines at the University of Basel Children’s Hospital, Switzerland, and former leader of a global vaccine safety initiative, discusses how we can gauge the safety and effectiveness of the new vaccines.

Caring for Our Caregivers

Healthcare workers are first in line for new COVID-19 vaccines, but after a year of fighting to save lives and halt the pandemic’s deadly spread, they need more from us than slogans of support. While they risk their lives daily to save ours, many people ignore or refuse to follow basic guidelines to help stop the spread of coronavirus. Author of the new book “Dare to Care — How to Survive and Thrive in Today’s Medical World,” Dr. Bonhoeffer discusses practical ways people can express love and appreciation for healthcare heroes.

Combating Medical Burnout

Rates of burnout, divorce, and suicide among health care professionals are twice as high as in the population they serve, and the pandemic is only increasing stress on our care providers. Dr. Bonhoeffer shares how medical professionals can reclaim empathy and compassion as primary facets of healing — and how it can help them overcome disillusion and burnout.

Inoculating Ourselves Against the “Pandemic of Fear”

Doomscrolling” is one symptom of how fear and other negative emotions have become contagious in our constantly connected culture. Dr. Bonhoeffer explains how tapping into kindness, love, hope and gratitude in our personal lives and relationships can inoculate us from the pandemic of anxiety and dismay.

Dare To Care — For Yourself

The hospital environment often runs on a sense of urgency — there are lives to be saved and constant fires to be extinguished. Medical workers who take time to care for themselves may risk being viewed as selfish or irresponsible. Dr. Bonhoeffer offers tangible, simple things healthcare workers can do each day to boost their courage, compassion and wellbeing — and the quality of care they provide.

2021 Resolution: Shift Your Internal State

An epic year of political and racial division along with fear and uncertainty over the pandemic has left many people feeling exhausted yet happy to leave 2020 behind and hopeful for the future. Dr. Bonhoeffer shares tips from his book “Dare to Care” that can help anyone find calm, courage and hope in the New Year.

The Most Important Part of Being a Doctor

After two decades working with child patients and their families, Dr. Bonhoeffer concluded the most important attribute of healthcare professionals is not academic or scientific knowledge, but being an “an authentic, dedicated, vulnerable, and caring human being.” He discusses why.

Empathy Over Authority — What Patients Really Need

Medical science is just beginning to understand the crucial role that empathy and caring play in healing. Dr. Bonhoeffer shares how compassionate listening is the key to creating a caring and loving environment that fosters healing.

Non-Love: Are You a Carrier?

After two decades specializing in infectious diseases, Dr. Bonhoeffer concluded that medical science has failed to recognize or address a condition that causes vast suffering, can be passed from person to person, and is often “carried” by medical professionals. Non-love is “our habit to create separation with people; to make people into objects.” He explains how medical professionals can inoculate themselves by recognizing that love is a healing force which is often overlooked and neglected.

The New Science of Love In Healing

Without loving relationships, humans fail to flourish, even if all of their other basic needs are met. While much attention has been focused on health benefits of romantic love, love and connection is also a key element in healing between caregivers and patients. Dr. Bonhoeffer discusses research into the healing power of love, including the work of Heart Based Medicine, a global network of healthcare professionals he founded that’s gathering data and bringing together experts on the impact of love on health.

The Heart of Healthcare

February is recognized as American Heart Month, a time to raise awareness of heart health to help prevent heart disease, and a month when we celebrate Valentine’s Day. Dr. Bonhoeffer shares how the human heart is more than an organ that pumps blood, but also “the vehicle of real healing” — and how health professionals can rekindle care, compassion and presence for their patients, and themselves.

Reconnecting with the Why of Healing

Almost all healthcare professionals started out with high aspirations born out of a strong desire to heal others. But over time the relentless demands of staying on top of science, technology and heavy workloads can dampen that spark. Dr. Bonhoeffer discusses how physicians and other medical professionals can reignite compassion, empathy and joy in their lives and work with tools available through the nonprofit foundation Heart Based Medicine,
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