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Lecture 23

SOCI 1001 Lecture 23: Health and Illness

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Carleton University
SOCI 1001
William Flynn

Medical Sociology Sociology of Health and Illness The social aspects of medical practices, systems The social aspects of physical and mental illness Health professionalpatient relationships Cultural meanings of health and illness Socioeconomic aspects of the health care system Health inequities Dr. David Gordon (1999) Tips for Better Health Dont be poor. Dont have poor parents. Own a car. Dont work in a stressful, lowpaid manual job. Dont live in damp, low quality housing. Be able to go on a foreign holiday and sunbathe. Dont become unemployed. Take up all benefits you are entitled to. Dont live next to a busy major road or a polluting factory. Learn how to fill in the complex housing benefitasylum application forms before you become homeless or destitute The World Health Organization (W.H.O. 2014) definition of health a state of complete physical, mental and social well being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity Is well being the same as health? What is considered healthy and good for us changes over time What do these have in common? Cigarettes Cocaine Fast food Sun exposure Symbolic Interactionist Approach Patientdoctor interactions Roles and statuses of medical expert and patient Labels what does it mean to become a cancer patient, to be labeled mentally ill etc Critical Approach to Health and Illness The dominance of the biomedical model of health care Medicalization The impact of race, class and gender on health outcomes and access to health care What illnesses get researched and why? Biomedicine
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