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Defining Key Terms

Question:

Discuss about the Hierarchy and Power are Intrinsic to the Current for Health Care.

The modern health care system in Australian offers widespread access to a comprehensive range of services, mainly supported through overall fiscal policy. Since the year 1984, a collective health system has been offered in this country by the Commonwealth Government, called Medicare. In the modern health care system, Medicare is now occasionally applied to designate the Australian health care system despite the fact that it specifically denotes access to medical care (medical Medicare) and hospitals (hospital Medicare) (Hall, 2015). In this particular essay I will analytically discourse the Australian antiquity of the health care systems, the contemporary nature and the policies set aside by the country’s government to recover health care. In addition, the paper discusses sociological theories in which there are innumerable sub-theories such as conflict theory and symbolic interaction theory. As (Kleinman, 2010) points out, it is from these particular theories, perspectives, and concepts one gets to comprehend and evaluate the communal interactions, relations as well as behavior of citizens in Australia. Moreover, this essay shall evaluate the associations of the sociological theories to the health care systems in Australia. Finally, I will explain how this discussion impacts on me as a health practitioner.

Before going deeper into the explanation of our topic of interest, it is important we define various key terms which shall be mentioned extensively in the course of the essay. These conceptions are medicine, health, hierarchy, and power. Stokols, et al. , (2013) defines health as the degree of an individual’s mental, social, and physical well-being. On the other hand, medicine refers to a societal institution which aims at preventing, diagnosing, and treating illnesses and consequently promotes health in its various aspects. In our context, hierarchy shall be used to denote an organization or a system of individuals or groups positioned one above the other according to their social status or authority. Emanuel, (2011) in his work defines power as the capability to influence or direct somebody’s code of conduct or a certain course of events.

 With the above definitions on mind, we now turn to our discussion on how they interrelate the in knitting the general health care system in Australia with a close reference to the arguments explained by the sociological theorists. Commonly, the three sociological perspectives, namely, Functionalism, Conflict theory, and Symbolic interactionism are used in our field of study to offer a more comprehensive understanding than any other theoretical approaches.

Functionalism

Snapshot and assumptions of sociological theories

  1. Functionalism theoretical perspective: Effective medical and good health are vital for the smooth performance of the society. Patients ought to take the “sick role” in attempt to be alleged as justifiably ill and then be exempted from their common responsibilities. The patient-physician connection is hierarchical that is the medicine practitioner offers guidelines, and the patient is expected to adhere to them (Trevin?o, 2014).
  2. Conflict theory Theoretical perspective: Societal inequity symbolizes the quality of health care as well as the eminence of health. Individuals from underprivileged community backgrounds have high chances of becoming ill and receiving insufficient health care(Turner, 2013). Moderately to upturn their revenues, doctors have attempted to regulate the practice of medication and to describe community difficulties as medical difficulties.
  3. Symbolic interactionism Theoretical perspective: Health and sickness are societal constructions: Mental and physical situations have petite or no objective authenticity but instead both are deliberated as healthy or ill situations if only they are demarcated as such by the society. General practitioners “manage the situation” to show their power as well as medicinal knowledge(Mead, Morris, Daniel , & Hans , 2015).

This theory was conceived by Talcott Parsons in the year 1951. According to Parsons, effective medical care and good health are necessary for a society to function smoothly. Poor health hampers citizen’s ability to carry out their roles in society, and if a large number of people are sick, the functioning and stability of the entire society suffer (KAMARA, 2015). For the last few decades, Australia has been subjected to frequent occurrence of premature deaths among the young energetic individuals. This happening has been said to prevent people from conducting their social obligations fully. In addition, the situation, just as Parsons emphasizes represents an “underprivileged return” to Australia for the several expenses of pregnancy, birth, children care, as well as the socialization of individuals who face demise early in their life time. Deprived therapeutic care is similarly dysfunctional for the social order, as individuals who are sick encounter severe difficulties in attaining their healthy status again and individuals who are healthy have high chances of becoming ill (ABC News, 2017).

Parsons argued that for one to be considered as acceptably sick, various anticipations, called the sick role, should be portrayed. These anticipations include the observation that the individual did not lead to his or her own health challenge. If every expectation is met, the theorist said that ill individuals are treated as ill by their friends, families, among other people they know, and therefore get exempted from their common responsibilities to all these individuals. At times they are even advised to stay in bed when actually want to appear full of life and healthy (Trevin?o, 2014).

Parsons said that medical doctors as well have a key role to accomplish. Most importantly, they are supposed to make a diagnosis of the individual’s sickness, determine how to administer treatment, and aid the patient gain their heath. In order to do that, they require the cooperation of the sick person, who is supposed to respond to the doctors queries precisely and adhere to the set instructions. The theorist hence saw the doctor-patient affiliation as hierarchical: the medical doctor provides the guidelines (or, much correctly, gives recommendation and directions), and the patient obeys by following them (KAMARA, 2015).

The conflict theory highlights disproportion or inequity in the quality of health care delivery and of health (Turner, 2013). As pointed out before, the quality of health care and health fluctuates significantly around the globe and as well within Australia. The social order’s discriminations along gender lines, public classes, culture, and race are replicated in Australian’s health care and health. Individuals from underprivileged societal settings are more probable to go sick, and the moment that happens, insufficient health care facilities makes it more problematic for those people to gain health again. As we will know, in several parts of Australia, the indication of inequalities in health care and health is massive and melodramatic (Godding, 2014). 

Conflict Theory

The conflict theory, besides, reviews determinations by medical doctors over the years to regulate the practice of medication and to describe various community difficulties as therapeutic ones. Australian doctors’ enthusiasm for doing that has been deemed both good and bad. Arguing for the positive side, these physicians are held to be the most competent specialists to detect health challenges and to render medication to patients who suffer from these complications. On the bad side, they have furthermore noted that their financial position shall expand if they make it in describing communal difficulties as medicinal difficulties and in dominating the management of these complications. The moment these glitches become “medicalized,” their conceivable societal backgrounds and so latent resolutions are abandoned (Loseke, 2008).

However, various instances in the Australian health care system exemplify conflict theory’s disparagement. In this country, substitute or unconventional medicine is emerging progressively widespread, but so has disapproval of it by the therapeutic institution. Doctors might conscientiously feel that medicinal substitutes are insufficient, unproductive, or even hazardous, but they also figure out that the usage of these substitutes is economically detrimental to their own practices (Acton, 2012). Eating maladies as well show conflict theory’s reproach. Majority of the girls and women in Australia who have eating illnesses obtain assistance from a medical doctor, a psychoanalyst, a psychologist, or any other health-care specialist. Even though this health care is sometimes very useful, the description of eating complaints as a therapeutic difficulty nevertheless offers a noble source of revenue for the experts who treat it and disguises its ethnic backgrounds in the society’s customary of magnificence for women (Australian Government Department of Health, 2016).  

Critics argue that the conflict approach’s evaluation of medicine and health is excessively punitive and its disapproval of doctors’ inspiration far too skeptical. Systematic medicine has significantly enhanced the health of individuals around the globe leave alone Australia. Though medical doctors are undoubtedly driven, as several people are, by financial contemplations, their determinations to spread their scope into earlier nonmedical zones likewise stem from straightforward philosophies that publics’ health and lives shall advance if these determinations do well.

The symbolic interactionist approach stresses that healthiness and sickness are community constructions (Mead, Morris, Daniel , & Hans , 2015). That is different mental and physical disorders have diminutive or no objective authenticity but in its place are reflected as healthy or ill situations if only they are demarcated as such by the community and its members. A good example illustrating symbolic interactionist theory’s concerns is the development of the diagnosis of ADHD (Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) in Australia. ADHD is a neurodevelopmental illness (a challenge linked to brain development) which leads to unwary behaviour, hyperactivity, and attention difficulties (Digital Phenix , 2017). A few years, the patients were perceived to be simply as excessively energetic. Soon after Ritalin, a medication which decreases hyperactivity was established, their conduct came to be viewed as a medicinal challenge and as a result the ADHD diagnosis was progressively executed, and thousands of children in Australia sought help from doctors’ offices where they were given Ritalin or related treatments.

Symbolic Interactionism

In another recent instance, an effort to redefine obesity illness is today ongoing in the Australia. As (Department of Health & Human Services, State Government of Victoria, Australia, 2017)says, this ailment is a recognized wellbeing peril, but a “fat acceptance” or “fat pride” program comprised primarily of heavy people is disagreeing that health hazards of obesity are overstated and calling responsiveness to community’s discernment against overheavy individuals. Even though this refinement is surely unsuccessful, critics maintain that the program is going too far in its attempt to diminish health perils associated with obesity.

The figurative interactionist approach has as well delivered significant educations of the interface between health-care professionals and patients. Deliberately or not, general practitioners in Australia “regulate the situation” to show their power and medicinal knowledge. Patients typically are impelled to wait for longer times for the medical specialists to arrive, and the physician is frequently wearing a white lab coat; and he or she is also habitually referred to as “Doctor,” but patients or clients are frequently addressed by their first names. Doctors characteristically use multifaceted therapeutic terminologies to designate a patient’s ailment rather than the simpler expressions used by general public and the ailing clients as well (Jennifer et al, 2010).   

Criticizers burden the symbolic interactionist methodology for suggesting there is no disease with neutral realism. Numerous severe health conditions among Australians are witnessed and put individuals at jeopardy for their wellbeing irrespective of what they perceive or their social order reasons. 

Conclusion

The Discussion in this Essay offers an overview of the debate about the correlation between social hierarchies, power of medical specialists, and the current health care system in Australia. From it I get to understand that all clinical professionals need to comprehend various aspects of their client base so that they can offer the best services. Nurses ought to understand who their facility consumers are and who they are probable to be taking care of in attempt to give the most outstanding patient experience. The sociological principles discoursed in this assignment provide me with a deep comprehension, and thus institutes valuable hypothetical awareness; one of its vital advantages is that it prepares me for the encounters I shall bump into as a professional. It is evident that a thorough mindfulness of the societal dissemination of health offers physicians with a grander conception of the diversity of patients they are possible to come across, and the health subject matters mostly concomitant to people from diverse social settings. The benefits of this emerge unblemished when consideration is set to the area where the professional is employed.

References

ABC News. (2017, May 29). The number of recorded deaths from preventable causes in Australian aged care homes has increased by 400 per cent, according to new research. Retrieved from Early deaths recorded in aged care increase across Australia, study reveals: https://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-05-29/early-deaths-in-aged-care-increase-across-australia-study-shows/8567762

Acton, Q. A. (2012). Issues in biologicals, therapies, and complementary and alternative Medicine. Atlanta, Georgia: ScholarlyEditions.

Australian Government Department of Health. (2016, September 26). Eating disorders are estimated to affect approximately 9% of the Australian population. Retrieved from Butterfly Foundation for Eating Disorders : https://www.nedc.com.au/eating-disorders-in-australia

Department of Health & Human Services, State Government of Victoria, Australia. (2017). Obesity. Retrieved from Better Health Channel : https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/obesity#

Digital Phenix . (2017). Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Retrieved from DISORDERS: https://brainfoundation.org.au/disorders/attention-deficit-hyperactivity-disorder-adhd

Emanuel, A. E. (2011). Power definitions and the physical mechanism of power flow. John Wiley & Sons.

Godding, R. (2014). The persistent challenge of inequality in Australia's health. THE MEDICAL JOURNAL OF AUSTRALIA: MJA. doi:10.5694/mja14.c1020

Hall, J. (2015). Australian Health Care — The Challenge of Reform in a Fragmented System. New England Journal of Medicine, 493-497.

Jennifer Fong Ha, MBBS (Hons) Dip Surg Anat*†‡ and Nancy Longnecker, PhD‡. (2010). Doctor-Patient Communication: A Review. The Ochsner Journal , 38–43.

KAMARA, I. (2015, November 16). Unit 7 – Sociological Perspectives for Health and Social Care. The different sociological perspectives. Retrieved from https://kennieisha.wordpress.com/2015/11/16/unit-7-sociological-perspectives-for-health-and-social-care/

Kleinman, A. (2010). Four social theories for global health. The Lancet logo, 1518–1519,.

Loseke, D. R. (2008). Thinking about social problems : an introduction to constructionist perspectives. New York: Aldine de Gruyter.

Mead, G. H., Morris, C. W., Daniel , H. R., & Hans , J. (2015). Mind, self, and society. Chicago ; London : University of Chicago Press.

Stokols, D., Hall, K. L., & Vogel, A. L. . (2013). ransdisciplinary public health: definitions, core characteristics, and strategies for success. . Transdisciplinary public health: research, methods, and practice., 3-30.

Trevin?o, A. J. (2014). Investigating social problems. Thousand Oaks: SAGE Publications, Inc,.

Turner, J. H. (2013). Theoretical sociology : a concise introduction to twelve sociological theories. Thousand Oaks: SAGE Publications, Inc,.

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