Patch Adams @Hunimed, March 23rd, 2015

Does humour help healing? A chat with Patch Adams, the famous US medical doctor and clown, today visiting Humanitas University.

Hunter Doherty “Patch” Adams has met our Medicine and Nursing students and told them his life-long experience, explaining the importance of humour and compassion in healing: as a physician and social activist, Patch Adams has devoted over 40 years of his life to changing America’s healthcare system and has founded the Gesundheit! Institute, an hospital located in the rural West Virginia offering 40 beds and free care, based on a model in which laughter, joy and creativity are an integral part of the healing process.

“You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.” Closing his speech with a touching quote, the original doctor from Washington D.C has pointed out as society and physicians often give little attention to some factors who are really indispensable to people’s health as family and optimism in the approach to one’s illness.

Patch Adams has then visited Humanitas’s Cancer Center, bringing a moment of laughter to the oncologic patients of the Institute.

His trip to Milan is part of a tour on the territory of Mediolanum Corporate University (MCU), within the “110 is inspiration”, series of meetings on subjects like trust, the strenght of love and an optimistic approach to the future.


Humanitas is a highly specialized Hospital, Research and Teaching Center. Built around centers for the prevention and treatment of cancer, cardiovascular, neurological and orthopedic disease – together with an Ophthalmic Center and a Fertility Center – Humanitas also operates a highly specialised Emergency Department.