The Biopsychosocial-Spiritual Paradigm - The Anthropological Context and Medical Implications
Theses:The biomedical model dominant in the medical sciences and health sciences proved to be insufficient in explaining the reality of human health and disease. As a consequence, the reductionistic model has been replaced by a new - biopsychosocial model, which allows to understand man as a set of systems that are in constant communication with environmental factors. The discoveries made in specific fields of medicine, especially in palliative medicine, led to the reformulation of the currently dominant model. In 2009, the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) stressed the importance of the spiritual dimension in caring for the sick, thus extending the existing paradigm of the spiritual aspect .
Results:Data from scientific research, especially conducted by the team of H. G. Koenig, confirm that more religious patients live longer, less frequently experience specific health disorders and are characterized by better somatic health. Studies in social sciences point to the positive impact of religion on mental health and quality of life of patients . Patients under the spiritual care better assess the work of medical personnel and report the need to talk about religious topics during their stay in medical centers. Moreover, adequate spiritual care contributes to a significant reduction in the cost of treatment in patients who are terminally ill .
Conclusion:The paradigm modification in medical science has brought a whole series of consequences.The reductionist approach to the description of human reality was replaced with a more comprehensive one, which facilitated the study of many phenomena related to health and disease. And although the currently valid paradigm is characterized by certain shortcomings, definitely contributed to the development of medical knowledge and improved the quality of care for patients. Research and discoveries in the field of patients spirituality and its relationship to their health led to a change in education programs at the majority of medical schools in the USA. Medical organizations and scientific associations have developed standards of spiritual care and recommendations for medical personnel. Increasingly, hospitals are hired highly qualified persons responsible for the spiritual care. There is also a possibility to use many tools for assess the patient’s spiritual condition, which have been prepared for medical employees, e.g. FACT, FICA .
Disciplines:medical sciences, health sciences, philosophical anthropology
Keywords- Biopsychosocial-spiritual model, religiosity, spiritual care, biomedical paradigm