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Native Voices tells stories of medicine, healing, and cultures

May 8, 2012

Native Voices, the new exhibit at the National Library of Medicine in Washington, DC, tells the stories of medicine and healing from the cultures and perspectives of Native Americans, Native Alaskans, and Native Hawaiians. Dr. Rob Logan spoke to a Purdue audience on April 30, 2012, about the exhibit, the years spent gathering the materials, and the lessons he hopes visitors will take away from it.

The Native Voices exhibit is currently running at the NLM in Washington; however, visitors from around the globe can visit the website, which contains video interviews and excerpts of stories from the exhibit.


Logan’s “Take Home” points:

  1. Health, healing and happiness are a community and ecologically based relationship.
  2. Individual health is tied partially to the health of your surrounding community, your tribe, your immediate family, and your personal responsibilities.
  3. Underlying community health are current socio-economic and environmental as well as legacy conditions.
  4. It is important to treat a patient by integrating others into the care in addition to focusing on the specific illness.
  5. High contemporary rates of illness in "Indian Country" are seen as partially linked to forced relocation plus the decline, denial of native culture.
  6. Medical state-of-the-art is more than evidence-based clinical practice.
  7. Comprehensive care combines traditional healing with Western medicine
  8. Interventions need to be more than clinical.
  9. The more serious and chronic the disease or disorder, the more the need for a multidimensional clinical approach.

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