Why we are rethinking medicine
Our 'problem definition' paper sets out in detail the problem that Rethinking Medicine seeks to address - in other words, it articulates why we are rethinking medicine.
Download 'Why we are rethinking medicine'.
Rethinking Medicine is addressing the problem of the dominant use of the biomedical model in England as a universal solution to address many of the multiple and complex challenges that our population faces with its health and wellbeing.
While modern medicine is one of humanity's greatest achievements - the clarity, simplicity and success of the model are both remarkable and beguiling - a growing number of doctors and patients are questioning whether modern medicine has over-stretched itself.
The success of the current medical model leads to, and is associated with, several overlapping imbalances. Principally, these include:
There are potentially negative consequences of an unbalanced approach to medicine – with too much emphasis on the medical model – for different groups involved in the delivery of healthcare, including patients, clinicians and system leaders. Some doctors are already trying to change their relationships with patients, to listen more carefully to their narratives and work alongside them, sharing information about diagnoses and options for treatment, and offering more personalised care and support.
Underlying these more person-centred approaches is an awareness that some things doctors do are effective for some clinical problems but that different approaches are required to respond to an increasing number of the challenges that doctors face.
The aim of Rethinking Medicine is to act as a 'force multiplier' that resonates with people – particularly doctors – as a mutually reinforcing set of concepts and activities going on in this area already. By drawing together these disparate programmes, Rethinking Medicine does not duplicate existing work but strengthens it. It unifies and gives voice to what is already happening across the broad landscape of modern medical practice, from social prescribing to genomic medicine.