AMA Journal of Ethics®

Illuminating the art of medicine

Journal of Ethics Header

AMA Journal of Ethics®

Illuminating the art of medicine

AMA Journal of Ethics. July 2018, Volume 20, Number 7: 668-669.
doi: 10.1001/amajethics.2018.668.

Art of Medicine

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Healing Body and Spirit

This drawing of two hands—holding pills and a rosary—illustrates how clinicians maintain professional boundaries while supporting patients’ spirituality.

Artwork and caption by Ariana Ellis

Figure 1. Healing, by Ariana Ellis



Charcoal and gold leaf on paper.


This drawing considers how achieving balance between allopathic, Western medical practices and spiritual practices can be critical for clinicians hoping to offer compassionate health care. Ethical and clinical challenges of consistently offering compassionate care to patients from all backgrounds requires cultivating and practicing spiritual awareness while maintaining professional boundaries.

Ariana Ellis is a third-year student at Northeast Ohio Medical University in Rootstown, Ohio.

Conflict of Interest Disclosure

The author had no conflicts of interest to disclose.

The viewpoints expressed in this article are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the AMA.