Robert Schwab—Physician, Author, Speaker
Throughout a long and varied career as a physician, teacher, and writer, Dr. Schwab has consistently focused on the importance of humanism in medicine, and the ways in which a study of the humanities can benefit those who are pursuing a career in healthcare. He has written essays, poems, and stories, some of which explore medical themes, but all of which illuminate various aspects of the human condition that contribute to our understanding of suffering and healing. His first novel, Holy Water, explores the medical and nonmedical influences on the development of a young physician’s professional identity. His second novel, Backside of a Hurricane, is a story about the relationship between fathers and their children and the wisdom of sitting still when chaos swirls around you.
A former professor of medical humanities and emergency medicine, and medical school clinical department chair, Schwab also practiced palliative medicine for a number of years, providing care and healing to patients at the end of life. He left clinical practice in 2010, and now serves in an administrative role for a major health system, while continuing to write, speak and teach about his passion for the intersection of medicine and the humanities.
He received his undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of Virginia, completed postgraduate training in emergency medicine and patient safety, served as teaching faculty in Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Missouri, and now lives in Dallas, where he writes, fronts a cover band, teaches at UT Dallas, and plays golf just often enough to retain his hacker status. He and his wife, Cathy, reside in the home owned and operated by their two cats, Sox and Jester, and are delighted that their two adult children, Tyler and Emily, live nearby.