This unit conducts basic research in the field of health by combining perspectives from philosophy and communication sciences. It aims to elucidate healthcare through the construction of conceptual frameworks that define the essence of its components. Conceptual frameworks act like maps that inform and give coherence to empirical enquiry and actions. They are intellectual products that provide theoretical constructs for exploratory, descriptive and explanatory purposes. Starting from the definition of ‘functioning’, as found in WHO’s International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF), the PCU investigates the multifaceted dimensions of health and well-being, and the use of these terms in (healthcare) practice. Within PCU the perspectives of humanities interact in the exploration of the human side of medicine, and the practices of communication related to medicine and healthcare. These perspectives have a key role to play in analyzing the relationship between medicine, technologies and broader ideas of health, functioning and well-being. Thus, the unit offers a platform for the engagement of humanities traditions of studies with the accomplishments and challenges of bio-medical and technological advances.
The ‘Philosophy & Health Communication’ Unit’s main stakeholders are the Swiss Paraplegic Foundation, the academic community, healthcare and medical professionals and managers, policy makers and the general public.