Tuesday, 28 September 2010
Working in harmony
I have so missed singing in a choir! I finally got to a community choir rehearsal this week and loved it, despite my tiredness afterwards.
Voices training up and down the scales with fun exercises, learning new musical parts and words, having a laugh with friends and people I hadn't met before.
It involved a lot of concentration for me but, oh, when our choir leader's hand counted us in and our voices wove together - the beauty of that connected sound thrilled me.
So much in our society today separates.
And there is a lot in scientific practice that separates everyone out to their specialisms. Often the system, or social norms, keep us firmly apart from others with a scientific perspective that comes from a slightly different discipline.
But I have found that some barriers have been brought down gradually over the last few years, for those who seek out connections.
Now hear some encouraging words for patients from distinguished professor emeritus of microbiology and immunology, University of Michegan Medical School Fred Neidhardt:"Not uncommonly, investigations of infectious disease proceeded largely in medical school departments of internal medicine or pediatrics, while explorations of the intricacies of microbial growth processes were pursued at the same schools in basic science microbiology departments.
"That situation has been changing in the past couple of decades, and finally the frontiers of bacterial physiology and of virulence (molecular pathogenesis) have virtually fused."
In a post-antibiotic age where microbes are the focus of close attention in acute and chronic medical processes, that is a good thing to know - the scientists, whose combined knowledge may understand the problem better together, are now talking to each other!
Prof Neidhardt says the science has undergone a "seachange" because their differently wise voices are now "intertwined".
To all of my friends and acquaintances with more know-how than I: please, share the knowledge you have across professional boundaries, listen to people you haven't listened to before, join your wisdom to others' wisdom. The rising chorus will produce something connected and more wonderful that will benefit us all.