Centre for Health Ecologies and Technology


Medical Humanities and Bioethics Initiative (MHBI)


While medicine, science and technology deliver healthcare to people, the interdisciplinary medical humanities and bioethics enable meaning-making, reflection on values in healthcare and medicine and critical insights of health, illness, disability, death, treatment, care-giving and self-care experiences. This rich and creative field brings together perspectives from the bioethics (clinical sciences, philosophy, law), visual arts, performance, cinema, literature and narrative, cultural studies, anthropology, ethics, psychology, history of medicine and philosophy. MHBI focuses on humanizing contexts in clinical and healthcare settings with keen reflections on complex ethical issues raised as medicine and technology advance. Our researchers and practitioners analyze the practice of medicine and patient care within ethical, social and cultural contexts.

MHBI collaborates with patients, healthcare practitioners, management and other key stakeholders to research and co-design healthcare systems and practices that are culturally sensitive, humane and holistic and promote well-being. MHBI’s advocacy team aids in building the collective strength of patient communities to lobby and change healthcare policies and practices which are inclusive, patient-centered and democratic.

Medical practitioners and students are encouraged to engage with CHET’s ethicists, social scientists, psychologists, writers, storytellers, poets, illustrators, animators, designers, performing artists and software technologists. Our goal is to foster clinical and cognitive empathy and healing attitudes not only among the clinical communities but the larger healthcare communities.

MHBI humanities and social science researchers, doctors, curators, filmmakers, ethicist, artists, architects, designers and other practitioners at CHET also work on graphic medicine and other healthcare arts that educate and enhance health and wellbeing. Other areas of interests include history of medicine, biomedical ethics, healing environments, foods and nutrition, ayurveda and other medical systems, indigenous and other traditional healing practices, disability studies, narrative medicine and medico-botanical arts.

Our monthly MHBI films & seminars/lecture series will soon be open to patient advocacy groups and communities, medical practitioners, students and wider public.