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Development and Implications of the Zagreb Declaration on Person-centered Health Professional Education

James Appleyard, Juan Mezzich, Tesfamicael Ghebrehiwet


The aim of this paper is to describe the development of the 2013 Zagreb Declaration on Person-centered Education and Training and to provide additional information on the action point areas identified during the Declaration’s development process. It is a living document and further suggestions for refinement at our annual Geneva Conferences are welcome.

The current health profession educational system, including educators and professional role models, is dominated by professionals trained and practiced in a biomedical system of care focused on the diseases of individuals. There is less emphasis on their personal values and choices within a holistic care paradigm. There is a need for reorienting the education of medical and other health professionals towards person centered approach.

Main areas of action include: enhancement of the conceptual bases of professional training and public education; analysis and optimization of the organization and culture of educational institutions; selection of educators and students who are suited to the goals and responsibilities required of health professionals; and promoting curricular developments that have person-centered guiding principles’.


Zagreb Declaration, Transformative, Universal, Health Education and Training, Person Centered, Multidisciplinary, Attitude, Skills, and Competences.

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