Teaching argumentation theory to doctors

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This paper supports the need for health professionals to be trained in argumentation theory, by illustrating the challenges that they face in interacting with patients and according to the different models of consultation that patients prefer. While there is no ideal model of consultation that can be promoted universally, the ability to construct arguments in support of health professionals’ points of view, as well as the ability to engage in critical discussion with patients, translate in essential skills for reaching patients’ agreement when communication develops through the interpretative model or the informed decision model or, eventually, shared-decision making.


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