This 4-day retreat-like workshop is designed to improve the quality of care that clinicians provide while improving their own resilience and well-being. It offers an experiential learning environment, with a focus on developing the capacity for self-awareness in stressful and demanding situations.

Mindful Practice® programs include interactive presentations, workshops, and seminars for physicians, trainees, other health professionals and medical educators. They are built on a strong bio-psychosocial foundation and contain three major components – mindfulness meditation, narrative medicine, and appreciative inquiry – each integrated with the others into a seamless approach. Mindful practice depends on developing a capacity for mindfulness. Mindfulness is a naturally occurring human capacity, not just restricted to meditation or other "mindfulness-based" interventions such as mindfulness-based stress reduction or mindfulness-based cognitive therapy. Mindfulness can be cultivated through various means including meditative exercises, physical activity, narrative, dialogue, poetry, and music. Mindful practice workshops use a set of contemplative practices that orient and inform other approaches, such as narrative and appreciative inquiry, to bring mindfulness to the clinical enterprise. Mindful Practice® curricula are specifically focused on three linked goals: Improving quality of care, quality of caring, and improving physician well-being and resilience.

Mindful Practice® goes online

With current challenges in scheduling live in-person Mindful Practice workshops, and with the opportunities afforded by online educational technologies, we are excited to announce the availability of Mindful Practice as a live, interactive online workshop.

Mick has spent the past several months engaged in graduate-level courses for online educational design, discovering the wealth of resources and the depth of learning that can be experienced in this format.

Together, we are creating a dynamic, interactive learning experience that not only promotes deep inquiry and the development of greater self-awareness, but also supports forming the professional connections and new collegial relationships that are so central to the experiences participants have at our in-person workshops.

Developing qualities

Mindful Practice® programs focus on promoting qualities exhibited by exemplary physicians and clinicians that include, but are not limited to:

  • Attentive observation: Being able to observe without making judgments that would otherwise distort or diminish one’s capacity to understand. This quality helps clinicians to monitor their own biases, thoughts and emotions on a moment-to-moment basis, developing the capacity to “observe the observer,” and cultivating “the observing self.”
  • Critical curiosity: Seeing novelty in all situations, including familiar ones, and tolerating ambiguity and uncertainty. Cultivating curiosity helps clinicians to avoid common cognitive biases that lead to medical errors, such as premature closure or ignoring dis-confirming data. Curiosity also helps clinicians to see patients and families as unique individuals.
  • Beginner’s mind: Opening the mind to fresh perspectives and considering more than one perspective simultaneously. This quality compensates for the mind’s tendency to consider a problem from a fixed perspective, and instead allows for the consideration of multiple diagnostic and therapeutic options.
  • Presence: Being physically, mentally and emotionally present for patients, communicating an accurate understanding of the patient’s concerns and feelings back to the patient and acting with compassion. A critical part of presence includes the simultaneous self-awareness of the clinician's own somatic, affective and cognitive experiences while engaging in the unfolding clinical dynamic. Though physicians have written powerful narratives of such experiences, they also often report that “being there” is challenging in demanding, fast-paced, and stressful clinical environments.

Mindful Practice® programs offer strategies to enhance these qualities. In addition, participants find opportunities to share with each other their own strategies help them to be attentive, curious, flexible, and present.

Program Background and History

Ron Epstein's 1999 JAMA article, "Mindful Practice" established an intellectual basis for mindfulness and self-awareness in medicine. Mick Krasner brings years of experience teaching mindfulness based stress reduction to patients and health professionals. Together, they created a series of programs in Mindful Practice at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry to address the educational needs of medical students, residents, medical center faculty, and community-based physicians. They then began to offer similar programs nationally and internationally. Since 2010 they have offered intensive residential workshops for medical educators and practitioners at the Rochester Zen Center's Chapin Mill Retreat Center in Batavia, NY. They focus on cultivating healing intention, focused and panoramic attention, attentiveness to the needs of self and others, and caring and humanistic attitudes that foster better understanding of people, their contexts and their needs.

Mindful Practice for Medical Clinicians


Three components that make up the core experience of Mindful Practice are:

  • Formal and Informal Mindfulness Meditation: Cultivation of an open, receptive, and non-judgmental orientation to one’s present experience, which helps promote physical, emotional and cognitive stability
  • Narrative Medicine: Creation and sharing of reflective stories that explore the profound and meaningful experiences one has as a physician/clinician, which helps connect the clinician with sources of professionalism and satisfaction
  • Appreciative Interviews: Based on Appreciative Inquiry, a strength-based approach to individual and organizational change that alters habitual patterns of thinking and behavior, designed to help participants discover capacities and resources within themselves for positive potential

The acquisition of medical knowledge, assimilation of clinical information, and continued honing of manual skills are vital to professional competence. Likewise, the continual honing of interpersonal skills, steady development of increased intrapersonal and interpersonal awareness, and capacity to attend to patients with presence are also central tasks toward the goal of practicing high quality, relationship-centered medical care. A desirable outcome of Mindful Practice is the integration of these skills into the practitioner’s clinical understanding and individual expression in much the same way that the understanding of organ systems and their physiology and pathology become integrated into an approach to solving problems in a clinical encounter.

Goals of Mindful Practice® programs

  • To foster skills of attentive observation, critical curiosity, "beginner's mind", and presence
  • To improve recognition of error-prone situations, reduce medical errors, and improve responsiveness to errors
  • To foster caring and compassion toward patients
  • To promote professionalism
  • To promote clinician flourishing--resilience, health, and well-being
  • To help create mindful organizations that support teamwork, mindfulness, and clinician health and well-being

Learning objectives

This workshop offers an experiential learning environment, with a focus on developing the capacity for self-awareness in stressful and demanding situations. At the conclusion of this activity, participants should be able to:

  • Increase clinician self-awareness and self-monitoring during clinical work and teaching
  • Increase clinicians’ ability to attend to patient’s needs, reduce and respond to errors, practice with greater effectiveness and compassion, and attend to their own well-being
  • Incorporate mindful practice into clinical and educational activities at their home institutions?

Session themes and (provisional) schedule

Session themes include flourishing and finding meaning in medicine, noticing and attention, self-awareness and mindful communication, promoting deep listening and compassion, when things go wrong, uncertainty in medicine, gratitude, attending to self-care, resilience and well-being, and promoting mindfulness in participants’ own work settings.

Training Schedule (Central European SummerTime – GMT+2)

Sunday evening, October 4

  • 6:30 PM- 9:00 PM: Introduction to Mindful Practice

Monday, October 5

  • 11:30AM-12:00 Noon: Deepening Contemplative Skills
  • 12:00 Noon-12:30 PM: Affinity Groups
  • 12:30 PM-1:00 PM: BREAK
  • 1:00 PM-3:00 PM: Noticing: Surprise and Perception
  • 3:00 PM-5:00 PM: BREAK
  • 5:00 PM-5:30 PM: Affinity Groups
  • 5:30 PM-7:30 PM: Health Professional Grief and Loss
  • 7:30 PM -8:30 PM: BREAK
  • 8:30 PM-9:30 PM: Deepening Contemplative Skills

Tuesday, October 6

  • 11:30AM-12:00 Noon: Deepening Contemplative Skills
  • 12:00 Noon-12:30 PM: Affinity Groups
  • 12:30 PM – 1:00 PM: BREAK
  • 1:00 PM-3:00 PM: Interpersonal Mindfulness: Insight Dialogue and Uncertainty
  • 3:00 PM – 5:30 PM: BREAK
  • 5:30 PM-6:00 PM: Affinity Groups
  • 6:00 PM-8:00 PM: Conflict

Wednesday, October 7

  • 11:30AM-12:00 Noon: Deepening Contemplative Skills
  • 12:00 Noon-12:30 PM: Affinity Groups
  • 12:30 PM – 1:00 PM: BREAK
  • 1:00 PM-3:00 PM: Resilience
  • 3:00 PM – 5:30 PM: BREAK
  • 5:30 PM-6:00 PM: Affinity Groups
  • 6:00 PM-8:00 PM: Bringing it Home

*Please note: In addition to scheduled live content, each day we will offer 60 minutes per day for asynchronous preparation (readings, videos) and online contemplative practices

For whom

The program is designed for physicians, medical specialists, and all other health care professionals, involved in medical care and education. No prior experience is required, however, experience with meditation or other contemplative practices is desirable.

Accreditation and certification

Upon request a certificate of attendance will be issued by the Centrum voor Mindfulness. The program counts for 21:45 hours of teaching (subject to review).

The Dutch organization for physicians has accredited this program within cluster ABC1 for 8 hours. Dutch Medical specialists can register the same number of accreditation point according the so-called 25% arrangement, that allows for obtaining 25% of point outside their specific field of expertise.

For US-citizens:

Accreditation: The University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

Certification: The University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry designates this live activity for a maximum of 23.00 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Guidelines for Participants

This participatory workshop has been designed to be an immersive retreat experience. It is a full-time commitment, requiring your full attention during the hours of the workshop, as if you were physically present at the retreat center. All of the live, online sessions will include activities such as narrative exercises, small group discussions and contemplative practices, so please plan to be situated in a quiet location that is free of interruption and distractions, and where you can be available to the other workshop participants. There will be regularly scheduled breaks for personal needs and to avoid "Zoom Fatigue." Please be sure to cancel any clinical, on-call, teaching and administrative responsibilities. In addition to the formal sessions, there will be forums in which you can share with colleagues less formally.

We will be using a secure version of Zoom, so the sessions will be fully confidential. In order to participate with an optimal visual and sound experience, you must have a desktop or laptop computer (a mobile phone or i-pad will not be adequate), a stable, high-speed internet connection, a good quality webcam (installed on many laptops) and a good quality headset or microphone and speakers. If you have any concerns about logistics and technology, please contact the Centrum voor Mindfulness - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Starting dates

List of startdates for training Mindfulness in Medical Practice Online