Medical Subject Headings
Clinical Medicine; Empathy; Ethics, Medical; Physician-Patient Relations; History of Medicine
Bioethics and Medical Ethics | History of Science, Technology, and Medicine | Medical Education
This essay will argue for the centrality of empathy in the doctor-patient relationship-as a core of ethically sound, responsible therapeutics. By "empathy," I intend an explicitly hermeneutic practice, informed by a reflexive understanding of patient and self. After providing an overview of the history of the concept of empathy in clinical medicine, I discuss current definitions and the use of Balint groups in residency training as a way to develop empathic competence in novice physicians.
Empathy, hermeneutics, Balint, interpretation, doctor-patient relationship, narrative, reflexivity
More, Ellen S., "Empathy as a Hermeneutic Practice" (1996). University of Massachusetts Medical School. Library Publications and Presentations. Paper 45.