December 9, 2022 - December 9, 2022 08:00 AM - 01:00 PM
The Arnold P. Gold Foundation White Coat Ceremony was initiated on August 20, 1993 at the Columbia
University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York.
This symbolic event welcomes the medical students into the profession of medicine and emphasizes the
importance of compassionate care for the patient as well as scientific proficiency. Students will recite a pledge,
which represents their public acknowledgment of the responsibilities of the profession and their willingness to
assume such obligations in the presence of their family, guests, and faculty.
In addition to a white coat, each ASOME student receives a pin depicting The Gold Foundation’s
“Humanism in Medicine” logo & a pocket card. ASOME expresses appreciation to The Arnold P. Gold
Foundation for providing the pins
On 9th December, ASOME hosted its White Coat Ceremony, a rite of passage emphasizing the importance of compassionate patient care at the beginning of training.
The Founding dean opened the ceremony by welcoming everyone present and the class of 2028; he emphasized the importance of the white coat ceremony and what it meant for the students and faculty at ASOME.
Forty-five new students recited a pledge to patient care.
Students came forward during the ceremony to be “cloaked” by eight medical doctors before family and friends in the iconic white coat that signifies their status as healthcare professionals.
Dr. Patrick Ndimubanzi, the keynote speaker and the HRH Executive Secretary in the Rwandan Government, encouraged the students to integrate the 6Cs; Care, Compassion, Courage, Communication, Commitment, and Competence. 6Cs are the central set of values of compassion in practice strategy. He wished the students a meaningful life on this journey and motivated them to be committed to patient care, community, and country.
May these white coats be a physical reminder of the Mantle of compassion, assurance, and humility. So said Dr. Fesaha Tsegaye, the Health ministry director of the East-Central Africa Division of the SDA.
In his speech, Dr. Andrew Mutero, an ASOME Board Member and Education Ministry Director of the East-Central Africa Division of the SDA, pleaded with the class of 2028 to strive to become the best of the best. Work hard, study hard, and put your best foot forward; we are training you to be the best doctors on this continent who will change Africa, he said.
Ms. Samantha, class of 2028 representative, in her response to the pledge, said, “we are devoted to becoming physicians that will uphold Christian values, be compassionate, provide wholistic Christ-like care, and put the needs of the community that we serve before our own.”
We recognize that pursuing medicine is not just a career but a calling from God to serve.
Other distinguished guests were Pastor Musa Mitekaro, an ASOME board member and the Executive Secretary of the East-Central Africa Division of the SDA, Dr. Ernest Munyemana DG of Kibagabaga Hospital, Prof Kelvin Onongha AUCA Vice Chancellor, Elder Jerome Habimana ASOME Board Member and treasurer of the East-Central Africa Division of the SDA, other ASOME Board Members.
The White Coat Ceremony was initiated in 1993 at Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians & Surgeons by Arnold P. Gold, MD, a professor, and pediatric neurologist. Dr. Gold, a passionate advocate for humanistic healthcare, believed that the oath taken by new physicians at the end of medical school came too late. Through the nonprofit organization that he and his wife, Dr. Sandra Gold, started, The Arnold P. Gold Foundation has expanded the White Coat Ceremony around the globe.
Today, some medical schools in our East Africa region and nearly every medical school in the United States, hundreds of nursing schools, and many other health profession schools around the globe participate in this tradition of humanistic care.
“Since 1993, The White Coat Ceremony has been an early and essential touchpoint of humanism on the path of a physician,” said Dr. Richard I. Levin, President, and CEO of The Gold Foundation. “Today, as you are facing the dual pandemics of COVID-19 and Ebola, the White Coat Ceremony is all the more relevant in emphasizing the importance of the human connection in healthcare. We are grateful for the leadership of the Adventist School Of Medicine Of East-Central Africa in elevating the message, both during the ceremony and throughout the years of education, that empathy and respect are critical parts of optimal care.”
The Gold Foundation champions human connection in healthcare. The foundation engages schools and their students, health systems, companies, and individual clinicians in the joy and meaning of humanistic healthcare so that patients and their families can be partners in collaborative, compassionate, and scientifically excellent care.
For more information about the White Coat Ceremony and the Gold Foundation, visit www.gold-foundation.org.
Ineza Diane Kibuuka
Adventist School Of Medicine Of East-Central Africa