Participatory Philosophy

By: Kathy Kastner March 30, 2012 The Society of Participatory Medicine supports “a movement in which networked patients shift from being mere passengers to responsible drivers of their health, and in which providers encourage and value them as full partners.” This concept seems especially essential for anyone whose quality of life is constantly adversely affected by a health condition: get in the driver’s seat.


Be that as it may, being a participatory patient is not for the faint of heart. As a member of the Society, I decided to articulate my own philosophy:

My 8 Point Philosophy of Participatory Medicine

1. I want to learn about my health issue(s).

* I feel I have sufficient skills and capabilities to be participatory. * I understand that, along with the learning and empowerment process, come stresses, disappointments, irritation, frustration, and exhaustion.

2. When I don’t understand something, I ask for an explanation.

* In the doctor’s office, I seek strategies to improve meaningful communication, and ask that jargon be written down so I can do my own research. * Before a doctor’s appointment, if I’m fearful, I research my symptoms and conditions to the best of my abilities, and bring my questions with me.

3. I’ve learned to do my own research, using [...] continue the story

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July 6, 2011