Dr. Ely is the Grant W. Liddle Chair in Medicine, Professor of Medicine in the Division of Allergy, Pulmonary, and Critical Care Medicine and co-director of the Critical Illness, Brain Dysfunction and Survivorship (CIBS) Center at Vanderbilt University Medical Center. He is also a practicing intensivist with a focus on geriatric ICU care.
Dr. Ely’s research has focused on improving the care and outcomes of critically ill patients with ICU-acquired brain disease. His team developed the primary tool by which delirium is measured in ICU-based trials and clinically at the bedside in ICUs worldwide. Dr. Ely has over 400 peer-reviewed publications and recently published a highly acclaimed book titled Every Deep Drawn Breath. All net proceeds from his book are going to patients and their families.
Despite his many accomplishments he will be the first to say that his most amazing accomplishments are his three daughters: Taylor, and twins, Blair and Brooke.
We hope you enjoy this episode with @WesElyMD where we discuss clinical research, creating change and humanism in medicine.
Questions We Asked:
- How did you become involved in clinical research?
- How do you “live at the edge of mystery”?
- How do you lead a large research lab effectively?
- How do you create buy-in to change clinical practice once you have made a discovery?
- What do you mean by “malignant normality”?
- How have you been successful in changing people’s minds?
- How have your relationships inspired you in your work?
- Was your passion for story the reason for writing EDDB?
- What does every person is a world mean to you?
- How has the pandemic affected your practice in medicine?
- How do we keep medicine human?
- How will technology influence our ability to maintain humanism?
- What are some books you would suggest to medical trainees?
Quotes & Ideas:
- Rules for designing a clinical research project:
- Study what you have a lot of
- Create a study where either answer matters
- As a leader, one of the most important goals should be maintaining a human connection with everyone in your team.
- Malcolm Gladwell’s Tipping Point idea of Mavens, Salespeople and Connectors
- Malignant Normality: we tend to think the way we do things is the best way to do things
- We need to use the power of story to change people’s minds
- Cada Persona Es Un Mundo, “Every Person is a World”
- “Sometimes a kind of glory lights up the mind of a man. It happens to nearly everyone. You can feel it growing or preparing like a fuse burning toward dynamite. It is a feeling in the stomach, a delight of the nerves, of the forearms. The skin tastes the air, and every deep-drawn breath is sweet. Its beginning has the pleasure of a great stretching yawn; it flashes in the brain and the whole world glows outside your eyes.” by John Steinbeck in East of Eden
- Everything in medicine comes down to “Humility, Glory and Wonder.”
- “If I think it’s just my job to take care of the MATTER, then I am missing ⅔ of that human being.” -Wes
- Always ask patients, “what matters to you?”
- My Own Country & The Tennis Partner by Abraham Verghese
- In Shock by Rana Awdish
- Crossing to Safety by Wallace Stegner
- Arrowsmith by Sinclair Lewis
- I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
As physicians, we are immediately thrust into a leadership position from the moment we finish medical school. Despite this, most medical students will obtain little formal leadership training. We seek to improve our leadership abilities as burgeoning physicians. We developed this podcast to challenge ourselves to explore ideas in leadership development and how they apply to medical training. We hope to educate and motivate others to further develop themselves as leaders in health care.