The McGill Programs in Whole Person Care were instituted in February 1999, on the initiative of Dean Abraham Fuks and Dr. Balfour Mount.
The Programs are based on the premise that in situations in which treatment is unable to change the disease outcome, it may be possible to create a space in which healing can occur. Lessons about quality of life and individuation learned in the arena of advanced illness also have relevance earlier in the disease trajectory, and for those who are physically well.
Traditionally, the existential and spiritual aspects of illness, and their relationship to health care outcomes, have received limited attention within the educational and research environment of North America, even though the existential/spiritual domain is known to be an important determinant of quality of life.
The McGill Programs in Whole Person Care aim to integrate the physical aspects of personhood with the psychosocial and existential/spiritual ones, and to better understand how to respond to suffering experienced by the whole person. The initial proposal to develop and to implement these Programs established the need for further research studies and educational programs that address the subjective experience of illness.
thomas.hutchinson [at] mcgill.ca (Dr. Tom Hutchinson)
angelica.todireanu [at] mcgill.ca (Angelica Todireanu)