Traditionally, the existential and spiritual aspects of illness and their relationship to healthcare outcomes have received limited attention within the educational and research environment of Western medicine. In recognition of this fact, the McGill University Programs in Whole Person Care were instituted in 1999 by the Faculty of Medicine. The Programs are based on the premise that in situations in which treatment is unable to modify the disease outcome, it may be possible to create a space in which healing can occur. While the existential/spiritual domain is known to be an important determinant of quality of life, there has been little emphasis on integration of these issues in healthcare systems. Programs in Whole Person Care therefore seek to integrate the physical aspects of personhood along with the psychological, cultural, social and existential/spiritual ones, and to respond to suffering experienced by the whole person within his or her particular context. This Journal will showcase the efforts of healthcare professionals and their patients, researchers and others working on these issues from a transdisciplinary perspective around the world with the aim to treat the person holistically with dignity and compassion. It will also encompass the whole person of the practitioner based on the postulate that well professionals foster well-being in those they serve.