Behavioral medicine is an interdisciplinary field concerned with the development and integration of sociocultural, psychosocial, behavioral, and biomedical knowledge and techniques relevant to the understanding of health and illness and the application of this knowledge and these techniques to disease prevention, public health and health promotion, health policy, etiology, diagnosis, treatment, rehabilitation, and care. The original definition of the field of behavioral medicine was developed at the Yale Conference on Behavioral Medicine and later published by Gary Schwartz and Stephen Weiss (1977). Since that time, there have been various refinements to the definition as reflected in the preceding definition.
Neal Miller (1909–2002), an American psychologist and recipient of the National Medal of Science (1964), is often credited as being the founder of behavioral medicine. He made significant contributions to our understanding of the relationship between reinforcement...