This book provides an important contribution to the new and growing field of ‘narrative-based medicine’. It specifically addresses the largest area of medical activity, primary care. It provides both a theoretical framework and practical skills for dealing with individual consultations, family work, clinical supervision and teamwork, and offers a comprehensive approach to the whole range of work in primary care. Using a wide range of clinical examples, it shows how professionals in primary care can help clarify patients’ existing stories, and elucidate new stories. It can be used as a training resource and includes exercises and summaries of key points to consider. It is based on, and describes, an established evaluated training method, and is of immediate and significant practical use to readers. It is essential reading for general practitioners, practice nurses and others in the primary care team, psychologists, family therapists, counsellors and other professionals attached to primary care. GP trainers, tutors and course organisers will find it a valuable educational tool. Professionals elsewhere in primary care such as pharmacists, dentists and optometrists, and academics in medical sociology and medical anthropology will also find it very useful.
Introduction. Part One: Practice. Narrative practitioner at work. Concepts. Techniques. Helping narratives to flow. Families. Mental health. What hinders narratives. Clinical supervision. Work consultancy. Part Two: Teaching. Background. The training. Some teaching exercises. The effects of narrative-based training. Part Three: Theory. From a patient-centred approach to a story-centred one. Balint and narrative: a comparison. Towards a narrative model for primary care. Appendix: The initial research.