Narrative medicine in a hectic schedule

John W Murphy, Berkeley A. Franz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


The move to patient-centered medical practice is important for providing relevant and sustainable health care. Narrative medicine, for example, suggests that patients should be involved significantly in diagnosis and treatment. In order to understand the meaning of symptoms and interventions, therefore, physicians must enter the life worlds of patients. But physicians face high patient loads and limited time for extended consultations. In current medical practice, then, is narrative medicine possible? We argue that engaging patient perspectives in the medical visit does not necessarily require a lengthy interview. Instead, a new orientation to this process that emphasizes dialogue between practitioners and patients should be considered. In this new model, the purpose of the visit is to communicate successfully and develop a mutual understanding of illness and care.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
JournalMedicine, Health Care and Philosophy
StateAccepted/In press - Aug 30 2016


  • Doctor–patient relationship
  • Health care
  • Health care philosophy
  • Interpretative medicine
  • Narrative medicine
  • Patient-centered care

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Education
  • Health Policy


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