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Abraham Verghese

Abraham Verghese is a physician and author known for his focus on the human side of medicine.

Born in Ethiopia to Indian parents, Verghese completed medical school in India, then an internal medicine residency in Johnson City, Tennessee, during the early days of the AIDS crisis. As little could be done at the time to cure people, Verghese realized his gift was for helping people heal by finding peace and acceptance.

He took a break from medicine in the early 1990s and earned a Master of Fine Arts from the Iowa Writers Workshop. He soon published a memoir about his experience in Tennessee, followed by another about his friendship with a patient who had died of AIDS. His 2009 novel, Cutting for Stone, spent more than two years on the New York Times bestseller list.

Verghese is founding director of the Center for Medical Humanities and Ethics at the University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio to emphasize empathy and sensitivity in the practice of medicine. Currently, he is professor and vice chair for the Theory and Practice of Medicine at the School of Medicine at Stanford University. He is also a popular speaker on the topic of the physician–patient relationship.

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