Malpractice Bandmates (left to right): Paul Mirone, MD; Jeff Larson, CRNP; Mike Marino, David Dexter, MD; Rob Chandler, DO
When the rigors of practicing medicine start to pile up, there's one way to find a healthy diversion for a few physicians and others involved in health care in Erie — they take it to the stage. Malpractice, a rock band boasting "Healthcare with Attitude," has been playing live events for more than five years.
By day, Paul Mirone, MD, is a family practice physician, but also performs as rhythm guitarist and back-up vocals for Malpractice. He was playing bass at church when he was asked to join the band that consists of a trauma surgeon who is lead singer, two family physicians, a nurse practitioner, and the husband of a nurse practitioner.
Anyone involved in health care wonders how they find the time to rehearse. "We all come from a musical background so we are lucky in that the songs come easily to us and we often play what we know," says Dr. Mirone. They play rock, pop, new wave, country, and the occasional request — they once had to learn "Hang on Sloopy" for a party consisting of Ohio State University fans.
Malpractice has its own fan following affectionately known as the "Band Aids." They come to see the band perform at outdoor venues such as Erie street fairs, bars, restaurants, and vineyards. The band's first gig was a birthday party, and they have been receiving requests to play via word of mouth ever since.
"We sometimes have to turn down invitations because of our hectic schedules." says Dr. Mirone who was once on set while he was on call. "Of course, my pager went off the moment before we were about to start," he says. But who could better understand this dilemma than his fellow physician bandmates?
Dr. Mirone says the best part of being in the band is the euphoria of watching the crowd's curious reaction to a rock band whom they know from the exam room. "But when the crowd starts to sing along, play air guitar, and dance, that is absolutely the part I enjoy most."
A version of this article appeared in the spring/summer 2018 "Art of Medicine" issue of Pennsylvania Physician Magazine, the Pennsylvania Medical Society's (PAMED) print magazine, and was reprinted with permission.
Find out how the Pennsylvania is helping physicians return to the art of medicine by advocating for your autonomy: visit www.pamedsoc.org/ArtofMedicine.