Sociological Theories and Perspectives in Health Care System in Australia
社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写 Before in-depth discussion of the main topic, it is important we understand the concepts that lay the foundation for this
Before in-depth discussion of the main topic, it is important we understand the concepts that lay the foundation for this essay. The question pertinent to this essay is whether hierarchy and power are an intrinsic part of the human social interaction. Though there are difficulties in giving a definite answer, mainly because of fuzzy definitions of “hierarchy”, “power”, and “intrinsic”.
In the context of sociology, “power” according to Weber “the ability of an individual or group to achieve their own goals or aims when others are trying to prevent them from realizing them”. From his definition of power, we view it as being authoritative and coercive. On the other hand, “hierarchy” in social science refers to the ranking of positions of authority, mostly associated with the chain of command and control. It involves the arrangement or network of units constituting of subunits which are organized the same way down the organization structure. And “intrinsic” is almost generally practiced by all humans and resilient across otherwise extremely divergent cultures. For instance, the desire to eat food is an inherent aspect of every human being.社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写
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The overall discussion question of this essay is how hierarchy and power are intrinsic to healthcare system in Australia drawing the arguments from the sociological theories and concepts. (Gabe and Monaghan, 2013), Healthcare system forms the critical part of the government concerns in Australia. The reason is that health is the basic need of every citizen. This essay will discuss the sociological theories in the context of hierarchy and power in healthcare and the impact to the health practitioners. From the sociological theories, we understand the social interaction, relationships, and behaviors of people in the healthcare. It will also discuss the implication of these theories to the healthcare practitioners.
译文：本文的总体讨论问题是，等级制度和权力在澳大利亚的医疗体系中是如何固有的，借鉴了社会学理论和概念。 （Gabe和Monaghan，2013年），医疗保健系统是澳大利亚政府关注的关键部分。 原因是健康是每个公民的基本需求。 本文将讨论医疗保健中等级制度和权力背景下的社会学理论及其对健康从业者的影响。 从社会学理论，我们了解医疗保健中人们的社会互动，关系和行为。 它还将讨论这些理论对医疗保健从业者的意义。
Understanding sociology and health care
According to Becker (2017), generally, sociology studies the human behavior or society. It uses the empirical research and critical analysis to explain social phenomena like order, disorder and change on one hand and a social science on the other. To understand sociology in academic terms, it is viewed as the study of human societies. Sociology is also understood in the terms of the research-based study of society (2017). In health, sociology includes social medicalization, disease, mental health, disability, and epidemiology. It studies the interaction between society and health.社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写
Sociology has proved that health and illness cannot only be isolated as only biological and medical phenomena. They are in constant evolution from one society to the other. When we control existing diseases, a new one develops requiring new approaches.
In analyzing health and illness, sociology uses the following focuses:
- Using sociological perspectives to explain the illness. It applies the experience of illness and the social structuring of health and disease. Sociology is used by the clinicians and other healthcare professionals in doing research for the development of health policies and epidemiological studies.
- Used to get a better understanding the impact of social processes in health practitioners and social groups. These include the social disparities, practitioners’ relationships, personal identity, hierarchy, and power.社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写
Sociological Perspectives on health care in Australia
The Functionalist Approach
The Functionalist perspective was conceived by Talcott Parsons in 1951. This perspective focuses on the stability of the society by emphasizing on the good and effective medical care. Unhealthy and ill people are unstable to perform their societal roles which affect the stability and functioning of the society. In this context, societies constitute more than aggregates of its functional parts but rather the functionality of each part is critical for the whole society. In order to achieve stability, harmony, and cooperation, socialization must exist within agreed norms and values. Parsons discussed this approach in terms of sick role. He established how the sick are expected to behave and how those taking care of them also carry themselves.
According to Parsons, the sick has the role to play and should never be blamed for their conditions. The sick should be treated with care and not seen to be responsible for their sickness. They should be exempted from the normal activities in the society. They should not be obligated to carry out any role that is beyond what they are capable of at their condition. However, the legitimacy of illness must be ascertained by the medical physician as genuine.社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写
The sickness of any member of the society weakens the stability of the society.
Therefore, it is important to normalize the conditions of the sick person so that they can continue being productive in the society. In this case, the doctor has the sole power to decide who is sick and who is not and to offer medical help to change the conditions of the person. Therefore inadequate medical care is dysfunctional to the society because the sick have difficulty in getting well and the healthy people may become sick.
In the case of sick persons, family, close friends or other people they know to take care of them. They are also exempted from normal duties. They are sometimes given time to rest on the bed. Giving them these attentions provide a better room for them to get well and be able to continue with their societal roles.
因此，使患者的状况正常化很重要，这样他们才能继续在社会中富有成效。 在这种情况下，医生拥有决定谁生病和谁没有生病的唯一权力，并提供医疗帮助以改变该人的状况。 因此，医疗不足会给社会带来不良影响，因为病人很难康复，健康的人可能会生病。
如果是病人，家人，亲密朋友或其他他们知道要照顾他们的人。 他们也被免除正常职务。 有时他们有时间在床上休息。 给予他们这些关注为他们提供了一个更好的空间，使他们能够康复并继续履行其社会角色。
Medical practitioners have roles to play according to Parsons
They have the responsibility for diagnosing a person’s illness, offer medication for treatment, and give support to the ill to get well. For them to achieve this there is a need for cooperation between the physician and the patient and adherence to the instructions as per the doctor’s prescriptions. He viewed physician and patient relationship as hierarchical, that is, the physician gives orders which the patient must do as instructed.社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写
Parsons establishment of the need for healthy individuals to build healthy and stable society has not been without criticisms. First, his discussions on healthy society focus more on short-term illness than long-term illness. His argument is that people get ill for short time after following the physician’s instructions and are able to go back to their normal roles. However, those with chronic illnesses may stay sick for long period or permanently.
Second, his theory also fails to consider social backgrounds and how they affect chances of illness and the level of care given to the sick. Third, Parsons acknowledged the existence of hierarchy intrinsic in the physician-patient relationship. It has been criticized by experts by proposing the need to reduce the hierarchy by patients inquiring more about their health and being active in maintaining their health. Until the physician failed to provide adequate medical care, his proposed hierarchy is partly to blame. Haralambos, M, and Holborn, M. (2008) believe that there exist a form of conflicts between the individuals in the society but the group importance and shared interests surpass individual interests.社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写
The Conflict Approach
According to Weitz (2013), the conflict perspective mainly focuses on disparities in the provision of quality health and health care delivery. (Bridgingthegap.scot.nhs.uk, 2017), in health care there exist societal inequalities which exist along race and ethnicity, social class and gender lines. Due to these inequalities, the vulnerable people have a higher prevalence of falling ill and they receive inadequate health care making their sickness to prolong. Below, this essay will explain the disparities that exist in health care.
The conflict theory has criticized physicians’ efforts of taking the lead in medical practice and defining various social problems as medical. Their motivation is either guided by good or bad motives. On the good part, physicians are considered the highly competent professionals to diagnose illness and offer treatment to the illness. On the other hand, their negative side is that they have realized the financial benefits that come with making social problems be medical problems and having the monopoly of the solutions to the problems. There is the likelihood of neglecting social roots of the problems if the social problems are made medical problems.社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写
The criticism of conflict theory can be illustrated using several examples.
The popularity of alternative medicine has done passed without criticism from the medical institution. Even though they may honestly criticize it on the basis of inadequacy, ineffectiveness, or risky, the physicians acknowledge that the use of alternatives impacts their medical practices negatively. The conflict theory criticism can also be illustrated by the problem of eating disorder. The patients with eating disorders receive assistance from a medical practitioner. Defining eating disorder as a medical problem nonetheless provides a way of earning income to the medical professionals who serve the patient. This will obscure the social root of the problem in the society (Whitehead & Kurz, 2008).
Another illustration is the obstetrical care. A few centuries ago in human history, pregnant women delivered their babies with the help of midwives. Later, the medical professionals came and claimed to be better qualified and trained to offer safe delivery services than midwives. Yet they may be correct that midwives lack proper training to do deliveries but on the other hand, they recognize the benefits accruing to them if they offer the services.社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写
A final example is about how many children are being diagnosed with ADHD
Historically, this condition was taken as being overly active. Later, Ritalin, a drug used to reduce hyperactivity, was developed. By the virtue of the presence of Ritalin and other similar drugs in the market, ADHD was considered a medical problem, and more and more children were diagnosed with the problem. Therefore, there was an increase in the market for the Ritalin and other similar drugs. To the medics, defining ADHD as a medical problem was lucrative to them and the drugs’ manufacturers. (Conrad, 2008; Rao & Seaton, 2010), this has resulted in obscuring the possible social root cause of the problem, which are inadequate parenting, stultifying schools, or even gender socialization.
Critics disregard the criticisms of conflict approach as cynical. They argue that the assessment is overly harsh to the physicians. The modern healthcare has played a greater role in improving the people’s healthy lives. Although there is truth in this criticism, there is evidence of disparity in health care service provision and the negative motives of the medical professionals for extending their reach is compelling.社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写
从历史上看，这种情况被认为是过于活跃。后来，开发了用于降低机能亢进的利他林。由于市场上存在利他林和其他类似药物，多动症被认为是医疗问题，越来越多的儿童被诊断出患有该问题。因此，利他林和其他类似药物的市场有所增加。对于医生来说，将多动症定义为医疗问题对他们和药品制造商都是有利的。 （康拉德（Conrad，2008; Rao＆Seaton，2010）），这导致了问题的可能社会根源被掩盖了，这些根源是育儿不足，使学校呆滞不前，乃至性别社会化。
The Symbolic Interactionist Approach
Under this approach, health and illness are viewed as social constructions. According to Buckser (2009), any illness conditions have little or no objective reality but instead is considered healthy or ill if they are defined as such by a society and it members. For instance ADHD, in symbolic interactionist theory, it was not considered a health problem but was later come to be a medical condition after the development of Ritalin.
Obesity now considered a health risk but a movement mainly of heavy persons has come in defense of their condition saying that the health risk associated with obesity is exaggerated and the society need to stop discrimination against them. Even if the discrimination exists, critics of the movement argue that it is going too far trying to overlook some risks associated with obesity (Diamond, 2011).
在这种方法下，健康和疾病被视为社会建构。 根据Buckser（2009），任何疾病状况都几乎没有客观现实，但如果被社会及其成员定义为健康或生病，则被视为健康或疾病。 例如，多动症，在象征性的互动主义理论中，它不被认为是健康问题，但后来在利他林的发展之后成为一种医学疾病。
This approach has also provided how patient and healthcare professionals interact.
Physicians are considered to be at the position of managing the situation, in doing so they are showing their authority in medical knowledge. Patients have to wait for the physicians to show up, and they are often in a white lab coat; they also addressed as “doctors,” while the patient is called by their names. They usually use complex medical terminologies which the layman cannot understand instead of simple terms which the patient will understand.社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写
When it comes to gynecological examination of the patient especially it is being done by the male, management of such a situation is important. The situation may cause embarrassment and uneasiness because the man is touching the woman’s genital area. The physician must apply care and high levels of professionalism in such a circumstance. He must treat that examination like any other and make sure he shows no personal interest in the woman’s body. To manage this situation even better, such examination is done when a female nurse is present.
This theory is criticized for implying that no illness has objective reality. There are many sicknesses which put people at high risks regardless of the society opinion on them. Critics also argue that the theory overlook the social inequality for health illness. However, this theory establishes that health and illness do have a subjective as well as an objective reality.社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写
In conclusion, the above theories have proven the existence of power and hierarchies between the interaction of the patient and the medical practitioner. These powers and hierarchies can have the good or the bad motivations depending on the angles they are viewed at. Physicians have power over their patients and by the virtue of their hierarchy in the medical knowledge, patients follow their instructions to get well of their problems. Patients trust the physicians mostly without questioning. The approaches’ arguments on medical services prove that the human being is intrinsically seeking power and control.社会学理论和观点代写 医学代写
综上所述，以上理论证明了患者与医生之间互动的力量和层次结构的存在。 这些权力和等级制度可能有好有坏的动机，这取决于它们所处的角度。 医师对患者具有控制权，并且凭借其医学知识中的等级制度，患者可以按照他们的指示来很好地解决自己的问题。 患者几乎不用怀疑就能信任医生。 这些方法关于医疗服务的论据证明，人类本质上是在寻求权力和控制。
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Bridgingthegap.scot.nhs.uk. (2017). Bridging the Gap : Poverty, Deprivation and Inequalities. [online] Available at: http://www.bridgingthegap.scot.nhs.uk/health-in-scotland/poverty,-deprivation-and-inequalities.aspx [Accessed 11 May 2017].
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Gabe, J. and Monaghan, L. (2013). Key Concepts in Medical Sociology. London: SAGE Publications, pp.36-40.
Diamond, A. (2011). Acceptance of fat as the norm is a cause for concern. Nursing Standard, 25(38), 28–28.
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Whitehead, K., & Kurz, T. (2008). Saints, sinners and standards of femininity: Discursive constructions of anorexia nervosa and obesity in women’s magazines. Journal of Gender Studies, 17, 345–358.
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