A new Institute of Medicine report calls for changes in the medical
school curriculum to give students a better understanding of the social and
behavioral factors that may affect the care and treatment of their patients
(http://books.nap.edu/catalog/10956.html). Research has shown,
for example, that psychological and social factors influence chronic disease
risk and recovery, and that harmful behaviors such as smoking can have adverse
effects on such illnesses as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.
Hampton T. Medical School Curricula. JAMA. 2004;291(16):1951. doi:10.1001/jama.291.16.1951-d