This paper examines the phenomenon of trust in health care relationships from a new perspective, that of the recipients of care for chronic illness. The authors argue that reciprocal trust is a necessary component of satisfying, effective health care relationships when the illness is of an ongoing nature. From the patient's perspective, reciprocal trust has a significant impact on the experience of being a receiver of health care and on the development of competency with illness management. Because of this, the authors claim that it is imperative for health care professionals to alter their traditional beliefs with regard to sick role and trust. With a new perspective, they may then develop the specific skills necessary to enact the caring aspect of the service they offer. The authors offer a number of suggestions for actualizing this reciprocal trust in clinical practice.