Positive Health

Support for the „Positive Health“ concept

by Machtheld Huber from the Netherlands in German-speaking countries.

A human being is more than his or her illness or state of health. Nevertheless, our thoughts about health usually focus only on that state. All the attention is on symptoms and health problems and how to solve them.

Positive health offers a more holistic perspective. The concept is both a vision and a method:

A vision of health

In recent years, there has been a significant change in how we conceive of health and disease. For a long time, health was defined primarily as the absence of disease. Positive health takes a broader view. It views health not as a fixed state or a goal to be achieved, but rather as people’s capacity to resiliently and independently adapt to whatever life throws at them. This more dynamic approach does better justice to individuals and what they find important.

A method

This broad interpretation of health is elaborated in six dimensions that have emerged from research on how people define health for themselves. They seem to give weight not only to physical health, but also, for example, to meaningfulness, participation, and quality of life. The web diagram above illustrates the six dimensions and the aspects associated with them. With the help of the diagram, people can outline and assess elements of their own health. It is also a tool that can be used as a prelude to a conversation about health and well-being.

Positive Gesundheit Deutschland e.V. association founded

At the end of 2023, the Positive Gesundheit Deutschland e.V. association was founded and recognized as a non-profit organization. We are very pleased about this important step.

Further information about the association and support options can be found at Positive Gesundheit Deutschland e.V. (in German).

Handbook Positive Health in General Practice published in German

The German edition of the „Handbuch Positive Gesundheit in der Hausarztpraxis: Gemeinsam an eine sinnvolle Versorgung arbeiten“ is available in stores since January 2024.

The book provides numerous tips, explains the scientific basis and history of the Positive Health model and describes practical examples.


The CHAJA Foundation would like to help this holistic health concept to become more widespread and applied in German-speaking countries. Positive Health offers an enormous chance to strengthen doctor–patient-dialogue and thus to make good therapeutic decisions together.

For more information on Positive Health and to download the discussion tool, click here: Institute for Positive Health (iPH).