Salutogenesis: The Defining Concept for a New Healthcare System

By: Wayne B Jonas, Ronald A Chez, Katherine Smith, Bonnie Sakallaris
Publication Name: Global Advances in Health and Medicine
Year:  2014

A decade ago, we published several articles that described our definitions of healing and of healing-oriented practice and environments (HOPE) and how they are organized to create an optimal healing environment (OHE) as they apply to healthcare. We also provided a description of the seven domains and their elements that constitute an OHE.1 In the ensuing years, the accumulation of scientific evidence and the changes in healthcare delivery brought on by health reform have reinforced the importance of an OHE as the preferred clinical approach to patient care by individual health practitioners and healthcare institutions. Some elements in our OHE definition have been incorporated into the operations and best practices of several medical institutions and into large systems in their attempts to transform from disease treatment to health and healing.2 However, in our field studies and evaluation of the literature, we have not found a complete prototype of an optimal healing environment that fulfills our definition and criteria. This is not a criticism. Rather, it is a comment on the reality and exigencies that exist when medical organizations take on the task of changing their culture and philosophy of care. To help healthcare organizations move toward becoming OHEs, we have developed research and educational tools for making a culture change toward institutionalizing healing as a way of practice.