BioScience Trends. 2017;11(2):148-151. (DOI: 10.5582/bst.2017.01085)

Preliminary thoughts on research in medical humanities.

Yun XJ, Guo JW, Qian HH


Medical humanities (MH) is an interdisciplinary field of medicine which includes the humanities (literature, philosophy, ethics, history, and religion), social sciences (anthropology, cultural studies, psychology, sociology, and health geography), and the arts (literature, theater, film, and visual arts) and their application to medical education and practice. Studies of MH should not be limited to theoretical discussions. Research results must be translated into use of methodologies to formulate medical policies, guide clinical practices, and help resolve physical or mental problems. MH has a critical role in addressing medicine-related issues, such as human cloning legislation and the treatment of Ebola virus infection. Recently, MH has also been included in the "Healthy China 2030" project, indicating that MH has garnered more attention in China. Medical colleges, research institutes, and non-profit organizations are focusing on MH studies. Over the past few years, financial support for MH studies has also increased. Although the development of MH currently lags behind medicine and health sciences, MH has promise.

KEYWORDS: Medical humanities, medical education, medical humanities research, China

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