Patient-Centered Medicine: A Human Experience emphasizes the health professional's role in caring for patients as unique individuals by focusing on the patients' psychological and social realities as well as their biological needs. The book concerns itself with caring for the whole patient, and outlines the basic principles involved in developing a biopsychosocial approach to medical practice. This is a volume of guidelines that will help medical studentsand clinicians develop and master basic attitudes and skills essential to providing empathic and comprehensive medical care. As Norman Cousins writes in the foreword, 'The authors understand and repeatedly demonstrate in this book, that the patient-physician relationship is a powerful, sometimes mysterious,frequently healing interaction between human beings. It is the person of the doctor and the presence of the doctor-just as much and frequently more than-what the doctor does that creates an environment for healing. The physician represents restoration. The physician holds the lifeline.' Since the book's original publication by University Park Press in 1984, greater awareness and acceptance of the biopsychosocial model has occurred, and medical schools are now working to fully integratepsychosocial education into the clinical curriculum.
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