Course/Training

The Healing Power of Comedy

Need an account?

First time accessing a Phoenix Society course? Signing up is easy and free!

Have an account already?
Log in now 

Not your first time here? Welcome back! Sign in to access this resource.

Integrative Healing
Personal Growth
Self-Care / Self-Compassion
Social Interactions

Scientific studies have shown a direct correlation between the use of humor and the diminishment of pain. In addition to easing tension and comforting others, comedy has been shown to help in various other medical and psychological ways, including combatting fear, reducing stress, and even boosting the immune system. Some hospitals now use “Comedy Rooms,” which encourage patients to use humor to recover from any illness/injury. During this session, you will learn how humor has benefitted one survivor’s healing journey, hear from a burn surgeon on the power of comedy in the medical setting, and gain insight into the psychological benefits of humor in healing.

This is a partial recording from Phoenix World Burn Congress 2021.


About the Panelists

Josh Gropper (moderator) is a lawyer and the managing partner of Gropper & Nejat, PLLC in New York City and has devoted his long professional career to being an advocate – and a resource – for the significantly injured and their families. Josh helped initiate the Phoenix SOAR (Survivors Offering Assistance in Recovery) chapter at Nassau University Medical Center on Long Island where his younger brother Danny, a burn survivor and quadruple amputee, volunteers. Josh has previously been a speaker and panelist at prior Phoenix World Burn Congresses. Josh – along with countless others – has been inspired by Danny’s wonderful sense of humor and has seen first-hand how Danny uses his comic gifts to deal effectively with “the elephant in the room” which helps set those around him at ease. Josh is eager to showcase Danny’s comic gifts with other burn survivors and to discuss the healing power of comedy from a medical and psychological point of view with an eye towards empowering other burn survivors.


James Bosch, LMFT, is a licensed psychotherapist in the state of California, a childhood burn survivor and part of the Wellness team at the Phoenix Society for Burn Survivors. James was introduced to the burn community in 1994 as a counselor for Champ Camp and later went on to fill many program related roles at the Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation. James has been a program chair for the American Burn Association, is one of the ordinal NAC team members, creating the PSOAR program and is involved in many Burn Foundation and Burn Center after care and psychosocial program facilitation and development. His mission is to help survivors break free from the frozen parts of their trauma stories, build community and meaningful lives after traumatic injury.


Dr. Darnell Brown received his BA in Psychology at Georgetown University. He earned his medical degree and Masters of Public Health from New York Medical College School of Medicine. He was the chief resident at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson School of Medicine and completed the Acute & reconstructive Burn Fellowship at Harvard Medical School Massachusetts General Hospital. He was also a Clinical Instructor in the Department of Plastic Surgery at Harvard Medical School Massachusetts General Hospital before being awarded the ABA Burn Travel Fellowship in 2019. He is the author of number of publications and several national presentations at national conferences. currently just opened a new burn unit in Indiana.


Dan Gropper was in an apartment fire on December 10, 1989, and was burned 78% of his body. He spent 6 months in the burn unit and a year in rehab at Nassau County Medical Center. Due to infections, he lost both of his hands, below the elbow, and his legs above the knee. He went back to Hofstra University after he got out of the hospital, and graduated with high honors a B.B.A. in finance. He has gone skydiving, box, golf, workout, go to concerts, games, and travel.

Phoenix WBC 2021

View select recordings from the virtual conference.

Course/Training
Keynote Message: BJ Miller

Dr. BJ Miller uses his personal journey to help ot...

read more 
Course/Training
Is Legal Action Right for You?

Find out what to expect from the legal process, ho...

read more 
Course/Training
Exploring Burns as a Chronic Condition

Understanding burn injury as a chronic disease may...

read more 
Course/Training
Make-Up Techniques for Burn Survivors

Learn make-up techniques for burn survivors to cam...

read more 
Course/Training
Spirituality in Healing: Is there a Connectio...

This discussion on Spirituality in Healing will sh...

read more 
Course/Training
Finding Purpose After Burn Injury

Returning to work after a burn injury means someth...

read more 
Course/Training
The Work We Do

Providing Burn Care is a physically and emotionall...

read more 
Course/Training
Sleep: A Yawn for Insomnia

Want to start getting better sleep? Learn how to i...

read more 
Video
Phoenix WBC 2021: Reflection and Next Steps

Join Amy Acton, J.R. Martinez, and Eduardo Garcia...

read more