A medical humanities view on patient and clinician perspectives in the consultation
- Date: –10:00
- Location: Akademiska sjukhuset Barnklinikens konferensrum, ingång 95/96 (följ skyltar/pilar)
- Lecturer: Jane Macnaughton
- Organiser: Forum för medicinsk humaniora och samhällsvetenskap
- Contact person: Anna Tunlid
- Phone: 070-3322746
Jane Macnaughton, Professor of Medical Humanities, Durham University: "A medical humanities view on patient and clinician perspectives in the consultation".
When we think of a humane approach to patients in the setting of the clinical consultation the word ‘holistic’ is often used. The critical implication implicit in the use of this word is that clinical care, especially at specialist level, does not take sufficient notice of the needs of the person attached to the body part under scrutiny. That person is not only a whole body, but also a body existing within the social and emotional context of a family and community. In medical humanities we tend to focus also on the idea of ‘narrative’: that clinicians need to take account of the patient’s unique story about what brought them to the clinic and which reveals their beliefs and understanding about why they are there. Although these issues are important, they do not address the crucial setting of the consultation and the minute by minute flows and exchanges of perspective that take place within it. Paradoxically, a philosophical medical humanities eye view of the consultation reveals the importance of objectifying the body not only of the patient but also of the clinician. Such objectification enables a focus on precise and acute clinical skills, both of which are important to the patient. This paper will explain the essential nature of this perspective, and how it may be interlaced with the interpersonal within the clinical consultation. Both perspectives are crucial to humane clinical practice.