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The two massifs

Modern healthcare (sometimes we call it biomedicine) is a massive and dominant enterprise in which the clinical gaze (1) is largely directed at the physico-material aspect of sick persons. In contrast, ‘whole person’ or person-centred approaches hold that people are complex multidimensional beings, in which physical, subjective, soul-ish, spiritual, creative, relational, genetic, family, cultural, and […] Read more

What we mean by the patient’s story

What is a ‘story’? I was asked this question recently by someone who had been associated with whole person healthcare for a long time.  ‘Story’ seems such a simple concept. Humans are storied beings. But suddenly it got complicated. There was too much at stake. As in a game of ‘snakes and ladders’, we had […] Read more

How to Listen

Generally speaking, clinicians do not listen to exactly what a patient says. When a patient speaks she is speaking from herself as a whole. When we listen very carefully to exactly what she says we have, potentially, a doorway into the whole. For instance, I asked a woman, a 43 year old office manager, ‘when […] Read more