"Before I was a doctor I was a poet." These words of Dr. Sriram Shamasunder's in this TED talk illuminate his deep appreciation for the power of narrative to inform health care. His impassioned plea for equal care for people everywhere is based on the knowledge that if we know the narrative stories of the people who die needlessly because of lack of quality health care, if we see each one as fully human, it will be clear that everyone should have the same quality of care, wherever they might live in the world. "We struggle on behalf of what we know, who we identify with, who we love." Dr. Shamasunder powerfully encourages us to allow for silenced voices to emerge.


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  • Learn about the Heal Initiative's mission to achieve health care equity for vulnerable populations. 
  • Read how the Heal Initiative is changing the health care landscape in Haiti
  • Read and contemplate this poem by June Jordan and think of how you can be one of "the ones we have been waiting for."

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