Professionalism Mission Statement

A climate of respect, civility and cooperation among students, house officers, faculty, administrators and staff is essential to achieving excellence in research, education, clinical care and university and community service. Therefore, the School of Medicine places a high priority on professionalism. Under the umbrella of professionalism lies an extended set of responsibilities that includes civil and courteous behavior and respect for all members of the SOM community, including students, residents, fellows, supporting staff and colleagues. Professionalism also includes open and honest communication, respectful dissent, support for the School’s missions and active and timely participation in education, mentoring and service activities.

In all interactions with patients and their families, faculty members are expected to demonstrate the core attitudes and behaviors that reflect the traditions of the profession of medicine and society’s trust. These include: compassion; respect for patients’ privacy and dignity; altruism in patient care and in the pursuit and application of knowledge; empathy; accountability; punctuality; sensitivity and responsiveness to patients’ age, culture, gender, ethnicity and disabilities; and responsiveness to society’s needs. In all educational, research and clinical care settings, faculty members will welcome and respect all religious, spiritual and political beliefs and will welcome and respect patients, regardless of socioeconomic status, including those who are uninsured or non-English speaking.

Faculty members are also expected to exhibit the characteristics of good academic and institutional citizenship by contributing to the teaching, service and administrative activities of their department and the School. Faculty members are expected to maintain a high level of scientific or clinical competence, as judged by their peers, and to demonstrate a dedication to life-long learning. Faculty members are expected to critically analyze, and avoid, activities that suggest a conflict of interest with their role as a clinician, scientist or educator. Faculty members must also adhere to the highest standards of academic honesty and integrity. For example, truthfulness, completeness and accuracy are essential elements in medical and scientific writings, in representations of effort and in medical record documentation.

Although these qualities and behaviors may be more difficult to evaluate than research, scholarship, teaching and other traditional measures of academic performance, they are critical to the missions of the School of Medicine and will be considered during annual performance, promotion, tenure and post-tenure reviews.

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