If You Change the Way You Look at Things, Things You Look at Change. Max Planck’s Challenge for Health, Health Care, and the Healthcare System

  • Joachim P. Sturmberg


Max Planck observed that ‘If you change the way you look at things, things you look at change’. It is high time for healthcare professionals to embrace the challenge—the linear reductionist view of health and disease is failing our patients, our profession and our societies. These insights are not really new, Osler has coined many aphorisms to emphasise the need to understand the person with an illness over and above the diseases that might be responsible for his predicament.

This chapter looks at health, health care and the healthcare system from a complex adaptive systems perspective—health is a subjective adaptive state, health care ought to aim at improving or at least maintaining the experience of health, and the health system ought to provide an integrated framework so that health for all can emerge. Looking at health, health care and the health system from the multiple dimensions spanning basic physiology and its networks to the organisational levels with the power to create an environment in which individuals can achieve their health potentials indeed makes ‘things we look at change’.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joachim P. Sturmberg
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.School of Medicine and Public HealthUniversity of NewcastleWamberalAustralia
  2. 2.International Society for Systems and Complexity Sciences for HealthWaitsfieldUSA

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