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Journal of Integrative Medicine ›› 2019, Vol. 17 ›› Issue (5): 321-327.doi: 10.1016/j.joim.2019.06.001

• Review • Previous Articles     Next Articles

Health care in light of different theories of health—A proposed framework for integrating a social humanistic perspective into health care

Lena Grönblom Lundströma, Ulri kaasaa, Yan Zhangb,c,Tobias Sundbergc,d()   

  1. a. Physiotherapy Unit, Department of Community Medicine and Rehabilitation, Umeå University, 901 87 Umeå, Sweden
    b. Harris College of Nursing and Health Sciences, Texas Christian University, Fort Worth, TX 76109, USA c. Australian Research Centre in Complementary and Integrative Medicine (ARCCIM), Faculty of Health, University of Technology Sydney, Ultimo, NSW 2007, Australia d. Musculoskeletal and Sports Injury Epidemiology Center (MUSIC), Institute of Environmental Medicine, Karolinska Institutet, 111 77 Stockholm, Sweden

  • Accepted:2018-09-09 Online:2019-09-06 Published:2019-09-10

The objective of this paper is to provide an overview of the biomedical, the biopsychosocial, and the social humanistic theories of health and to propose a framework for integrating the latter into health care. In summary, the definitions of health, illness and disease are essential to the practice of health care and play fundamental roles in how patients’ experiences of being ill are valued and assessed within health care systems. Principally, the biomedical perspective proceeds from pathoanatomical deficiencies defining disease and malfunction; the addition of psychosocial components forms a biopsychosocial perspective. In addition, the social humanistic perspective extends from a person’s will, their ability to act, and the possibility to fulfill wanted actions. Thus, health care that does not address the social humanistic perspective may lack the power to describe how these entities are related to the patient on a personal level; thus, the will of the patient is not always fully addressed. Importantly, by targeting the will of the patient and the patient’s ability to act, the proposed framework of integrating a social humanistic perspective into health care may further emphasize and strengthen the interrelatedness of medical perspectives. A framework for integrating a social humanistic perspective into health care is proposed and its potential impact on health care is discussed.

Key words: Theoretical models, Biomedical, Biopsychosocial, Social humanistic, Review

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