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Daniel Markwalter, MD

Email: daniel.markwalter@unchealth.unc.edu
Fellowship year: 2021-2022
Residency: Emergency Medicine, University of North Carolina

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Daniel was born outside of Atlanta, Georgia but spent his formative years in Northern Virginia. It was in high school there when he met his future wife, Christine. After graduating from Bucknell University in 2013, he attended Vanderbilt University for medical school, with Christine pursuing her PhD.

While at Vanderbilt, Daniel was Vice President of his class and was heavily involved with developing a social mission for the School of Medicine.  He enjoyed nearly every clinical rotation in medical school. His diverse clinical interests eventually led him to settle on emergency medicine for specialty training. He was drawn to emergency medicine by the ability to care for patients of all ages, including children, as well as the variety of acuity and opportunity to serve patients from all walks of life.

During medical school, Daniel also nurtured a love of narrative medicine, writing and publishing personal stories of medicine as a means of processing and reflecting on his experiences in the profession. This interest in the medical humanities grew to include clinical ethics, and Daniel took an extra year in medical school to pursue a Certificate in Biomedical Ethics. For this, he conducted research on the family experience of care in the pediatric ICU, took part in clinical ethics consults, and completed additional graduate coursework. During his clinical ethics work, he particularly valued his interactions with the palliative care team, which prompted his interest in the field.

In 2018, he matched into residency in emergency medicine at UNC. During residency, he maintained an interest in hospice and palliative care. He witnessed the frequency with which symptom management is provided in the emergency department (ED), the great need for early goals of care and advance care planning for both chronically and acutely ill patients in the ED, and the opportunity for deeper collaborations between the ED and hospice care. To this end, he led a project on ED-based advance care planning for patients being tested for COVID-19 in 2020. Throughout residency, he was also deeply involved with diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts in the ED. Moreover, he served as the Education Chief Resident for the Department of Emergency Medicine, developing and implementing residency curricular efforts.

He was thrilled to match into the Hospice and Palliative Medicine program at UNC because of its commitment to diverse exposure within the field, including both academic and community-based hospice/palliative care. He was also drawn to the program by the supportive, interprofessional spirit of collaboration. He continues to pursue his interests in ED provider hospice/palliative care education, ED-based goals of care, and ED-initiated hospice transitions by streamlining and implementing hospice/palliative care processes in the UNC ED.

Daniel lives in Durham with Christine, who is a postdoctoral researcher at Duke studying malaria in Kenya. They have a daughter, Ellis, and a German Shepherd named DJ. Daniel enjoys exploring the food scene in the Research Triangle and hiking. Other interests include acoustic guitar as well as track and field (especially pole vaulting).

Daniel Markwalter photo