The Oath of the Class of 2019

HMS/HSDM students pledge a promise to patients

Class of 2019 reading the class oath
Image: Steve Lipofsky

Today, upon being admitted to the professions of medicine and dentistry, I pledge to honor to the best of my ability and judgement this oath. I make these promises to you, my patients.

To uphold your dignity:

I will listen with curiosity and without judgment, recognizing that behind every illness is a human story.

I will respect your privacy and treat you with kindness, empathy and humility.

I will empower you; I will give you voice and offer you choice.

I will cure when possible, heal to the extent that I am capable and comfort you always.

To offer my best self:

I will remember that I am worthy of this profession and the privilege of caring for you.

I will embrace my imperfections with compassion, viewing them not as failures but as opportunities for growth.

I will practice and promote self-care, openly sharing my vulnerabilities to create safe spaces for healing.

I will be courageous and willing to risk failure, admit error, and ask for forgiveness.

To foster collaboration and mutuality:

I will work with others on your team, united by the common goal of caring for you.

I will recognize the expertise of your lived experience and share decisions in partnership with you.

I will ask for help when I reach the boundaries of my abilities and offer help to those reaching theirs.

I will cultivate a culture of resilience, advocating for structural changes to support my profession.

To practice the highest quality of care:

I will be a lifelong learner, recognizing that medicine is an ever-changing art and science.

I will advance knowledge through scholarship and innovation, guided by integrity.

I will celebrate the hard-earned progress made by those who came before me and share this learning with those who seek it.

To care for all:

I will embrace my citizenship in humanity and my obligation to act for the benefit of all human beings.

I will challenge my biases, striving to provide care that is inclusive of all aspects of identity.

I will combat structural oppression, promote social justice and model ethical action.

I will leverage my position of privilege to confront health inequities and restructure systems that fail you.

Today:

I stand with my peers in solidarity, united by our professions and these promises.

I celebrate where I have come from and look to the future with hope.

With gratitude to all who have supported me, I take this oath freely, joyfully and upon my honor.