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Why include the humanities in medical studies?


The relation between philosophy and biomedicine has been reassessed and rethought in the last few years: on the one hand, philosophy of science has paid increasing attention to actual modes of biomedical research and clinical practice; on the other, classes in philosophy, and more generally, in the humanities, have started entering medical curricula. However, the role of philosophy in medical education is not yet unanimously recognized, with situations differing significantly in various national and international contexts. In line with the tradition in Italy and other countries of reflecting on clinical methodology and with the recent initiatives at the crossroads between medicine and philosophy, this contribution aims to argue for the mutual relevance of medicine and philosophy in educational processes, and to suggest some possible forms of implementation of their interactions.

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  1. The conference was organized by Prof. Sergio Coccheri and Prof. Giovanni Boniolo.

  2. This re-organization was the work of one of the authors of this contribution, G.B. Special mention should also be made of the enthusiasm and hard work of T. Bellini, the Educational Dean of the Ferrara Medical School.


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Correspondence to Raffaella Campaner.

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The authors, Proff. Giovanni Boniolo, Raffaella Campaner, and Sergio Coccheri, declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Boniolo, G., Campaner, R. & Coccheri, S. Why include the humanities in medical studies?. Intern Emerg Med 14, 1013–1017 (2019).

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