The humanistic approach – relationship based care
New research is very relevant to maternity care where the focus on physical health and the baby dehumanises the mother treating her as a vessel or a baby-making machine.
We love the concept of whole person care that recognises the multiple dimensions of personhood, sensitivity to another’s needs; valuing involvement of the consumer, respecting and appreciating others perspective and acknowledging the shared human condition.
“Healthcare’s focus on physical disease and bio-medicine is unbalanced. We need to pay much more attention to emotional, psychological and spiritual wellbeing and the huge importance of healing relationships” Robin Youngson
The researchers state:
The decline in attention to the experience and impact of illness on patients that has accompanied advances in the scientific and biomedical aspects of medicine was lamented many decades ago, [1, 2], and remains an issue today [3–5] . For example, patients and their families express dissatisfaction with communication and emotional support in the medical care they receive .
In this article, Humanism in medicine is described through five themes representing core attitudes and behaviours:
• whole person care,
• recognizing universality, and
• relational focus.
1. Zilboorg G. Humanism in medicine and psychiatry. Yale J Biol Med. 1944;16:217–230. [PMC free article]
2. Cohen H. Medicine, science and humanism: reflections on the first half of the twentieth century. Br Med J. 1950;2:179–184. doi: 10.1136/bmj.2.4672.179. [PMC free article]
3. Engel GL. How much longer must medicine’s science be bound by a seventeenth century world view? Psychother Psychosom. 1992;57:3–16. doi: 10.1159/000288568. [PubMed]
4. Sadler E, Hales B, Henry B, et al. Factors affecting family satisfaction with inpatient end-of-life care. PLoS ONE. 2014;9:e110860. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0110860. [PubMed]
5. Campling P. Reforming the culture of healthcare: the case for intelligent kindness. BJPsych Bull. 2015;39:1–5. doi: 10.1192/pb.bp.114.047449. [PubMed]