Follow Us On

Medical Improv: Improving The Patient Experience

Medical Improv: Improving The Patient Experience

Health care professionals must not only provide robust clinical training in their given specialty, but they must also incorporate a solid curriculum in the “soft skills” (teamwork, communication, professionalism, etc. ). Although curricula on these topics are available, there are limited formal guidelines for program leadership to draw upon.

Medical Improv is an exciting new teaching tool that uses the principles and techniques of improvisational theater to promote teamwork, communication, leadership skills, and emotional intelligence for physicians in training. Rather than improv comedy, medical improv focuses on learning rather than performing through carefully selected and adapted exercises with targeted discussion about the medical environment and patient care.

Medical Improv focuses on the “soft skills” that require a non-traditional teaching approach to nurture new behaviors. Improv training is particularly helpful in medical education because it builds trainees’ skill-sets in complex, interpersonal behaviors. Literature shows that improv “enhances empathy and understanding and emotional intelligence of [trainees], and it translates into enhanced understanding for patients from other backgrounds or cultures.”


  • Highlight the initial ground rules that must be established to ensure a “safe space” for all participants
  • Discuss how improv can improve teamwork, leadership development, giving/taking feedback, paying attention, empathy/emotional intelligence, information transfer, and patient satisfaction
  • Detail exercise selection that aligns with medical goals and skills, along with bullet points to lead a target discussion

Ideal Audience & Opportunities

  • New Residents & Faculty Orientation
  • Nurses
  • Grand Rounds
  • Medical Conferences

Session Format Sample

In this interactive session, you’ll learn ways to collaborate and emote, as a team. Sample format includes:

1) An activity that not only serves as an icebreaker, but also introduces the audience to improv

2) An interactive workshop where all objectives will be discussed at length. Discussion will focus on application of these theater techniques into a healthcare delivery setting. Areas of focus include: ground rules for improv, how medical improv can improve teamwork, patient satisfaction, as well as sample exercises

3) Attendees will participate in other improv activities and debrief

4) Question and answer session

Participants will be leave this workshop with handouts that highlight improv exercises that they can practice with their teams and co-workers to ensure continued learning and return on investment.

Other Program Opportunities

1) 90-minute training session PLUS a train-the-trainer session to train an appointed person to run exercises on a regular basis (monthly), including a training guide

2) 90-minute training session PLUS five demonstration videos of exercises to run in on your own in future training/meeting opportunities (includes exercise book)

3) 90-minute training session PLUS quarterly training by P10 in person; four total instructor-led sessions; plus five demonstration videos of exercises to run in on your own in future training/meeting opportunities (includes exercise book)

Medical Improv Experience

  • Grand Strand Medical Center – Residents Curriculum Development & Execution
  • Grand Strand Medical Center – Leadership Development for Dept Heads
  • Fresenius Medical – Nurse Practitioner training for patient care excellence
  • Fresenius Medical – Business Development training
  • Sound Physicians – Get Off The preSCRIPtion training
  • Health Care Partners Of South Carolina – patient care excellence training
  • Presenter at SGEA (March 2019)
  • Upcoming Presenter at AAMC (November 2019)


For More Information, email getresults@pivot10results or call 843-597-6393.

Leave a Reply