Dalai Lama’s physician comes to Altoona

Local News

Some UPMC Altoona nurses underwent some unique training on Friday help them avoid burnout.
One of the most interesting things about the two-hour seminar  was the presenter. Barry Kerzin, an American physician and Buddhist monk is also the personal physician of the Dalai Lama.

His presentation focused on mindfulness, resilience, compassion, and meaning. Dr Kerzin’s been hired by UPMC to provide this training to 16,000  nurses in its system.

He says it’s particularly helpful for nurses and teachers because they take the brunt of a lot of the pain in our society. Dr Kerzin says the main message is about compassion towards oneself and towards others.

“The first way is to recognize what blocks our compassion, and then find out ways to reduce those blocks. The second approach is to head on enhance our compassion through  kindness, through generosity, through practicing no harm to ourselves to others,” he says.

Dr Kerzin says you need to be mindful of your feelings and if you’re dealing with anger and negativity,  you can learn ways to turn those feelings around. He strongly encourages meditation and the seminar Friday with UPMC nurses included a 45 minute meditation session.

The Altruism in Medicine Institute’s (AIMI) was started by Dr. Kerzin.  Its mission is to increase compassion and resilience among health care professionals

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