The General Model: Biological - Psychological - Social
To understand human beings in health and in disease, we must understand these three factors. The fuller the understanding, the better we understand how to promote health and heal disease and disorder.
The General Model has been emerging for several decades. A psychiatrist by the name of George Engel arguably started naming this idea and developing it. The mathematicians and engineers really started the conceptual framework in the form of General Systems Theory.
The old "nature versus nurture" argument has been shown to be irrelevant as research has demonstrated that the ideas we carry, the habits we have, the society we are part of all interact with our biology. The interactions don't stop there. Our biology interacts with the social and psychological. Our habits continuously modify our brain function; our brain function modifies both our existing habits and our abilities to acquire new learning and new habits.
The Growth of George Engel's Biopsychosocial Model
MODEL IN ANGLO-AMERICAN PSYCHIATRY: PAST, PRESENT AND FUTURE?
The Biopsychosocial Model. Richard Frankel, editor.
to the biopsychosocial model, developed by the late Dr George Engel,
physicians approach patients and the problems they present is very much
influenced by conceptual models of which they are often unaware. For
of years, Western culture has dichotomized science and art, empiricism
and subjective experience, and biology and psychology. In contrast with
the prevailing view in philosophy, neuroscience, and literary
George Engel, an internist and practicing physician, published a paper
in the journal Science in 1977 entitled 'The Need for a New Medical
A Challenge for Biomedicine.' In the context of clinical medicine,
made the deceptively simple observation that actions at the biological,
psychological, and social level are dynamically interrelated and that
relationships affect both the process and outcomes of care. The
perspective involves an appreciation that disease and illness do not
themselves only in terms of pathophysiology, but also may
affect many different levels of functioning, from cellular to organ
to person to family to society. This model provides a broader
of disease processes as encompassing multiple levels of functioning
the effect of the physician-patient relationship. This book, which
Engel's seminal article, looks at the continuing relevance of his work
and the biopsychosocial model as it is applied to clinical practice,
and education and administration. Contributors include: Thomas Inui,
Frankel, Timothy Quill, Susan McDaniel, Ronald Epstein, Peter LeRoux,
Morse, Anthony Suchman, Geoffrey Williams, Frank deGruy,Robert Ader,
Campbell, Edward Deci, Moira Stewart, Elaine Dannefer, Edward Hundert,
Lindsey Henson, Robert Smith, Kurt Fritzsche, Manfred Cierpka, Michael
Wirsching, Howard Beckman, and Theodore Brown.