Great Summer Reads for Aspiring Physicians
Have a recommendation for a book we missed? Tweet us at @AAMCPreMed with your favorite book about the practice of medicine with the hashtag #premedreads.
- What Doctors Feel: How Emotions Affect the Practice of Medicine—Danielle Ofri, MD
Dr. Ofri, an internist, explores the doctor-patient relationship and the role emotions play in patient care.
- The Check List Manifesto—Atul Gawande, MD
Author of several books on health care and patient safety, Dr. Gawande is a surgeon who explores how the simplest of methods—a checklist—can save lives and reduce errors.
- The Emperor of All Maladies—Siddhartha Mukherjee, MD, PhD
Pulitzer-prize winning author and pathologist, Dr. Mukherjee, writes about the history of cancer from its first documented occurrence to modern treatments.
- America’s Bitter Pill—Steven Brill
Award-winning journalist and author Steven Brill sharply examines the U.S. health care system and Affordable Care Act. Interesting fact: Brill had open heart surgery during the time he completed the book.
- The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks—Rebecca Skloot
Rebecca Skloot illuminates health disparities and injustices in this non-fiction work on the life of Henrietta Lacks. Lacks’ cells (HeLa) have been used in life-saving treatments to treat and cure polio.
- Mountains Beyond Mountains: The Quest of Dr. Paul Farmer—Tracy Kidder
This book tells the story of Dr. Paul Farmer, founder of the nonprofit organization, Partners In Health, and an infectious-disease specialist, who dedicates his life to caring for patients in the poorest and most under-resourced parts of the world.
- The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down—Anne Fadiman
Fadiman explores the impact of cultural understanding on patient care and the complexities that surround treatments.
- Adventures of a Female Medical Detective—Mary Guinan, MD, PhD
A physician’s memoir of her work to help eradicate smallpox and tackle the AIDS epidemic.
- My Own Country: A Doctor’s Story—Abraham Verghese, M.D.
A physician who also writes fiction, Dr. Verghese’s memoir focuses on his experiences practicing medicine in Johnson City, Tennessee while treating patients of the rural AIDs epidemic.
- Final Exam: A Surgeon’s Reflections on Mortality—Pauline Chen, MD
A columnist for the New York Times Well Blog, Dr. Chen explores the complexities of treating terminally ill patients and the emotional relationships between doctors and their patients.