Objective: Personal narratives of lived experience with psychiatric illness and distress remain central in the epistemology of mental illness. We provide a commentary on this potential bridging of patient narrative-based epistemology, and medico-scientific epistemology used by psychiatrists used for diagnosis, formulation, prognosis and treatment.
Conclusion: Discussion and planning of psychiatric care can be framed by understanding the narrative-based epistemology of a patient’s illness as highlighted by five key questions to explore the patient’s illness explanatory models. We propose five key questions for the psychiatrist’s complementary consideration of medico-scientific epistemology that frame conceptual models of aetiology, pathophysiology, diagnosis, formulation, prognosis and treatment, which are embedded in the predominant socio-cultural environment. These questions assist in bridging patient narrative and medico-scientific explanatory models to facilitate more effective collaborative care planning.
- explanatory models