The journal, BioPsychoSocial Medicine, was launched in January 2007, and more than three and a half years have passed since the start of publication. A total of 70 articles have been published, as of August 2010, but the number of those directly discussing issues of public health or social medicine is relatively small. Psychosomatic medicine, or biopsychosocial medicine, encompasses all aspects of the interrelationships between the biological, psychological, social, and behavioral factors of health and illness, and is not limited to mind and body connections in humans. Thus, it is meaningful that social aspects of health and illness are discussed in the current issue of this journal. The purpose of this special series is to introduce important concepts of social medicine relevant to the research fields of psychosomatic medicine.