Person-centered Medicine: advancing methods, promoting implementation

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Andrew Miles
Juan E. Mezzich


In recent years, the World Health Organisation, the World Medical Association, the World Organisation of Family Doctors, the World Psychiatric Association, the International Council of Nurses, the International Alliance of Patients Organisations and the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies of Sciences of the United States of America, along with a wide range of other major professional and patient societies of global clinical importance, have collectively articulated increasing and widespread concern at a deepening crisis within medicine – a crisis of knowledge, compassion, care and costs [1,2].  The common observation is one of a growing distortion in the priorities and ethos of medicine, where a reductive focus on disease processes and organ systems alone has led to the compartmentalisation of knowledge, the fragmentation of services and to documented increases in a frank neglect of patients’ concerns, needs and values [1].  When this phenomenon is considered alongside increasing healthcare resource scarcity in the face of a relentless increase in healthcare costs, together with an exponential rise in the incidence and prevalence of chronic and comorbid disease [3], we arrive at an astonishing picture of the current status of health services in our world today and to a startling realisation of the size and extent of the rapidly growing challenge with which we have now come face to face.  Since to do nothing is no longer an option, there are increasing and understandably urgent calls from policymakers across the globe for a response to this dilemma in the form of new approaches to the provision of healthcare services that aim to reverse the de-personalisation in clinical practice and increase its knowledge base, while attempting actively to contain or reduce its rapidly unsustainable costs.  This is a challenge of staggering complexity.

Article Details

Author Biographies

Andrew Miles, WHO Centre for Public Health Education and Training, Imperial College, London

Editor-in-Chief, International Journal of Person Centered Medicine & Professor of Clinical Epidemiology and Social Medicine, Medical School, University of Buckingham, UK Professor Miles, MSc, MPhil, PhD is a senior public health scientist. He previously held professorships and senior fellowships at King’s College University of London, Queen Mary College University of London, the University of East London, the University of Westminster, the University of Surrey and the University of Wales.He is Editor-in-Chief and Chairman of the International Advisory Board of the Journal of Evaluation in Clinical Practice, a leading and highly ranked international periodical for public health policy and health services research published by Wiley Blackwell Ltd with high impact factor and citation rate and extensive world circulation.Professor Miles is National Director and Editor-in-Chief of the UK Key Advances in Clinical Practice Series, a major collaboration between medical Royal Colleges and UK specialist clinical societies in a multi-disciplinary contribution to the evaluation and development of clinical practice in the UK, resulting in the organisation of some 22 annually recurring national conferences and some 22 annually updated, extensively referenced clinical texts which serve to document current scientific evidence and expert clinical opinion for the investigation and management of common diseases, the results of which are widely disseminated across the medical community of the UK. The Series entered its 13th successful annual cycle in January 2010.He is Director and Editor-in-Chief of the UK Masterclasses in Effective Clinical Practice Series in collaboration with the medical Royal Colleges and specialist clinical societies which examines how ‘general research evidence’ derived from the clinical literature is successfully applied to the care of difficult individual patients as part of the development of UK knowledge-based clinical practice.Professor Miles is an accomplished teacher at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels in public health and social medicine, and experienced in Master’s level course development and validation, and in university committee work and higher degree supervision at Master’s degree and PhD levels.He has published extensively in his field: over 50 edited textbooks in public health sciences and health services research, together with substantial numbers of original articles in leading peer-reviewed international clinical journals. He has contributed extensively to the international evidence-based medicine debate and to the development of thinking on the nature of knowledge for clinical practice. He has provided the intellectual leadership and organisational skills for 89 national clinical conferences and 26 national clinical masterclasses from 1998 to date. He regularly lectures at national and international conferences, and has made a substantial contribution to British medical education and clinical scholarship.

Juan E. Mezzich, Professor of Psychiatry, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York University, United States of America

Deputy Editor-in-Chief, International Journal of Person Centered Medicine, President, International College of Person Centered Medicine, Former President, World Psychiatric Association and Professor of Psychiatry, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York University, United States of America


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