Self-Transformations of Health Professionals in the Field

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Josée Lachance
Richard B. Hovey
Jean-François Desbiens



Health does not arise from health care. Perhaps we are facing an impasse and should we reconsider and reconceptualize the mandate of the health system. In order to improve our influence on the culture that often prevails in our institutions as well as the health of those institutions. This article examines the changes to the mandate of the health system seen in the light of self-transformations. This vision is based on a model that illustrates the transformations experienced by physicians following a mind-body training, i.e. Awakening the Sensible Being (ASB).


The model shows the transformation process reported by physicians, after experiencing self-awareness of what they are doing, through experiencing the ASB, while developing a closer relationship with themselves. As it turned out, the training was beneficial for their health. Their expanded sense of self-awareness and quality of “savoir-être” brought on by the training contributes to their impression of “feeling whole” and provides them with a quality of presence that influences the type of care they can provide to their patients by considering the individual as a whole.


This point of view could bring about a shift in the mandate of the health system and improve the health of caregivers and care-receivers as well, while contributing to widen the concept of health.

Article Details

How to Cite
Lachance, J., Hovey, R. B., & Desbiens, J.-F. (2018). Self-Transformations of Health Professionals in the Field. The International Journal of Whole Person Care, 5(2).
Theoretical Papers
Author Biographies

Josée Lachance, Université de Sherbrooke

Josée LACHANCE graduated with a master's degree (D.E.S.S.) in Perceptual Movement Education from Modern University of Lisbon (Portugal) in 2002. Since fall of the same year, she is a member of a team of professional instructors teaching Perceptual Education. In 2016, she obtained a PhD in Education at the Université de Sherbrooke, specializing in integrative medicine and experiential learning for healthcare professionals. She is also a GRX certified instructor for explicitation interview techniques. Holding the prospect of creating a bond between science and conscience, her research project revolves around integrative medicine and proposes a renewed way of looking at the complexity of human beings.
She also has a Masters degree in Business Administration from the Université de Sherbrooke.

Richard B. Hovey, Dr. Hovey is an Associate Professor in the Division of Oral Health and Society with the Faculty of Dentistry, McGill University.

Dr. Hovey has defined expertise in bridging gaps between theory and practice in areas such as patient centered care and communication in healthcare. His research approach utilizes philosophical hermeneutics and phenomenology in strengthening our understanding of the experiences of vulnerable and underserved populations, like those living with chronic illness, cancer, disability, or the effects of medically induced trauma. Topics of interest include patient and health professional education, communication, leadership, and interdisciplinary practice.

Jean-François Desbiens, Professeur titulaire, Faculté des sciences de l'activité physique, Université de Sherbrooke

Jean-François Desbiens holds a Ph.D. degree in educational sciences from Université Laval (Québec, Canada). He is currently a full professor at the Faculté des sciences de l’activité physique at Université de Sherbrooke (Québec, Canada), and a regular researcher with CRIFPE-Sherbrooke. Pr Desbiens is mostly interested in research and teaching in classroom management, teacher supervision during teaching practicum and higher education pedagogy. 


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