The Mind–Body-Spirit Learning Model Transformative Learning Connections to Holistic Perspectives: Seizing Control of Your Healthcare - The Relationship among Self-Agency, Transformative Learning, and Wellness

The Mind–Body-Spirit Learning Model Transformative Learning Connections to Holistic Perspectives: Seizing Control of Your Healthcare - The Relationship among Self-Agency, Transformative Learning, and Wellness

Kathleen P. King (University of South Florida, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/javet.2012070104
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Abstract

At a time when the medical field is dominated by the pressures of private insurance demands and government regulations, many people discover they need to be self advocates in order to battle illness and regain their health. Moreover, these issues are not constant, as many countries (like the USA) face changing demographics and continuing radical changes in healthcare funding. These conditions require that patients seeking healthcare re-examine constantly their assumptions on several levels including, but not limited to medical professionals’ motivations, training and accuracy, healthcare philosophies, and recommended treatments. Within this context, patients’ self-advocacy becomes essential. Yet such positive independence regarding the medical professions contradicts traditional American cultural mores. A critical question for this situation springs from adult learning and development: what are the relationships among discovering self-agency in personal healthcare, wellness, and transformative learning? This article uses the frame of an autoethnography to explore the relationship among these domains. The writer’s eight-year journey through debilitating illness includes growing understandings of and connections among transformative learning, mind-body-spirit connections, self-agency, self-advocacy, and cultural concepts of wellness.
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Background

Even before President Clinton’s attempt at healthcare reform in the 1990s (Kooijman, 1999), private insurance companies dominated the medical field with demands and government regulations. Medical healthcare has been a raging battleground of changing practices, policies and responsibilities as multiple players try to preserve their financial strength amidst rising costs, litigation, regulations and rapid innovation. Just a few examples of the events, and the financial awards, which influence this contested terrain include

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