Therapeutic, Existential and Educational Dimensions of Care

M.Benedetta Gambacorti-Passerini, Lucia Zannini


In Western culture, the concept of care is usually related to two main semantic domains: the idea of curing, mostly associated with medicine, and the idea of taking care, more frequently related to nursing and educational practices. The aim of this paper is to analyse the different meanings of care, including the existential dimensions of the caring process as well. After a brief analysis of the changes concerning medical science over the last centuries, we will mainly focus on the transformations through which the clinical practice has gone, thanks to whom the concept of taking care of the patient has gained increasing attention. The paper will finally underline the educational dimensions of the caring approach, intended as a patients global care. Indeed the aim of that approach is not only to promote a status of physical and psychological wellbeing, but also to support patients development through their personal growth and education.


Key words: To cure - To care - Educational care - Medical care

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