The allegory of the cave is a famous passage in the history of philosophy. It is a short excerpt from the beginning of Plato’s book, The Republic (1). There are a number of different interpretations of the allegory, but the one that I would like to present is within the context of education, specifically knowledge translation and the content, style and manner of its delivery. I would like to conclude with relating this to how we, as health care professionals, present knowledge within a professional dialogue.
Imagine a group of prisoners who have been chained since they were children in an underground cave. Their hands, feet, and necks are chained so that they are unable to move. All they can see in front of them, for their entire lives, is the back wall of the cave.
Brian Broom, immunologist, psychotherapist and CauseHealth senior advisor
Most Western clinicians who pursue a person-centred approach to physical illness experience significant resistance from colleagues and health institutions. At first glance this may seem strange. Wouldn’t everybody want to be person-centred and oriented to the unique patient? Isn’t it obvious that the appearance and development of disease is commonly multi-causal and multidimensional? Surely anyone can see that disease is a manifestation or representation within, and of, the ‘whole’, whether that ‘whole’ is the presenting individual, or a bigger ‘whole’, such as family or culture. But life is not so simple. (This blog post is an extract. Read the long text here.)
As you might have noticed, CauseHealth has joined forces with Oliver Thomson and his Words Matter podcast! As an introduction to our book for new readers – or as an extra resource for old readers – we wanted to have one podcast episodes for each book chapter, where Oliver interviews the author(s) of that chapter. It is going really well, and we have now covered all of Part 1, setting up the philosophical framework of dispositionalism, and are now moving on to Part 2, of clinical applications, showing how that framework can be used in practice. Today, episode 7 was released, where Christine Price talks about how she encountered philosophy of dispositions and causation and how she then used this to understand and manage her own chronic pain. You find this and other episodes on the Words Matter webpage!
The video chat was recorded by Stephen King, co-founder of Vocal Health Education, and appears in the second tier qualification they offer; The Vocal Health Practitioner. Watch the video on physical therapist Walt Fritz‘s website, Foundations in Manual Therapy – Science Informed Manual Therapy Education, where he also offers a range of educational resources on patient centred manual care.
Unless we are extremely lucky, we have all been patients within a health system. I now also theorize about it. It might be that the Cause Health project immediately resonated with me because of my own early experiences. Continue reading “A patient experience”
CauseHealth is pleased to announce “Towards a Person Centered Healthcare and Practice” – a conference on philosophy, persons and value. This event is in memory of our friend and CauseHealth collaborator, Stephen Tyreman.
Technology should make our life better, easier and safer. And yet, medicines, pesticides, nanotechnologies, biotechnologies et cetera, may represent a potential threat to health and environment. Some of the new technologies might be safe for most, but they could still be harmful for vulnerable individuals, communities or ecosystems. Continue reading “CAUSAL DISPOSITIONS IN RISK ANALYSIS”
In the early 19th century, the Hungarian physician Ignaz Semmelweis noticed from his clinical experience that antiseptic routines in healthcare reduced infections at childbirth. After carrying out some studies on the matter, he proposed that the practice of disinfecting hands in the obstetrician ward of the Vienna General Hospital, where he worked at the time, would have reduced the incidence of puerperal fever. However, for that time this seemed as an implausible suggestion. The germ theory of disease was still unheard of (Pasteur developed such theory only some decades later), and therefore there was no accepted understanding of how disease could be transmitted from one organism to the other. Semmelweis suggestion was therefore rejected by the medical community. Continue reading “DATA AND THEORY: NEW CAUSEHEALTH PAPER ABOUT THE PROBLEM OF WEIGHING COMPLEX EVIDENCE IN MEDICINE.”