How Does Sociology Contribute to Our Understanding Health Inequalities – Health System Example

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"How Does Sociology Contribute to Our Understanding Health Inequalities? " is a well-written example of a paper on the health system. Social structure and healthcare inequality in society are due to the prevailing differences in the social sciences. In this regard, the paper intends to explain the contribution of sociology to healthcare policy and practice in relation to health inequalities. It also intends to explain the development of health policy focusing on health inequalities in the UK through the evaluation of a model of the health policy. Health inequalities refer to the fact that different types of treatment and attributes are provided to a varied group of populations.

Contextually, sociology is a factor, which highlights the health inequalities within the population (World Health Organization, 2013). Contribution of Sociology to Healthcare Policy and Practice Relation to Health Inequalities Life expectancy and healthcare of people depends largely upon the social conditions and healthcare system. Social factors have a strong influence on health outcomes, practices, and policies. Social factors do lead to health inequalities depending on the situation, financial status, and educational background.   The social determinants for health include various aspects such as conditions where the individual was born and brought up.   In this regard, it can be stated that social factors are liable for the l level of health inequalities.

Sociology has some contribution to the policy and practice of healthcare in relation to health inequalities. Sociology helps in developing the skills of nurses in relation to health inequalities (Rosich & Hankin, 2008).   Health inequalities are the consequence of social inequalities as aforementioned. Sociology refers to scientific study and elaborates on the social structure along with the social stratifications (Mechanic, 2014).

As a scientific study, sociology plays a vital role in healthcare in relation to health inequalities and disparities. Sociology refers to the various factors and contributes to creating health inequalities based on prejudices. In this context, it is to be noted that socioeconomic social factors and sociology also affect health issues based on inadequate education, poverty, and unequal access to health care in relation to health inequalities (Seaman, 2014; College of Nursing, 2012). The Influence of Social Structures and Social Inequalities on Individual, Family and Community Health Social factors as well as social structures have a strong effect on the health aspect.

Social factors like education, employment, and social status have a major influence on the health of individuals, families, and communities. However, in developed countries, the social inequalities of health have been well recognized. It affects the environmental factors of individuals. Social factors use some standardized techniques to evaluate the risk factor of health. Health inequalities are the major problem of public health (Friedli, 2009). The influence of social structure and social factors on health is high in every part of the world.

  Social structure also influences health management, capacities as well as health behavior (Baker & et. al., 2005). The number of similar past and modern social factors shaped the health of individuals, families, and communities. Social factors and social inequalities affect the health of individuals, families, and (Ramirez & et. al., n.d. ). Social determinants mean the social as well as economic condition, which influences the health issues of people as well as communities. It improves the situation of the daily life of people as well as communities through tackling the inequalities of money, control as well as capitals and helps in a measure of the problem (CDC, 2014; Reading & Wien, 2009). The Development of Health Policy Focused On Health Inequalities in the UK Most of the people of the UK enjoy a high standard of living than other countries.

The UK takes initiatives to changes the health care system and the local authorities take part to improve the health system as well as develop the health policy for the eradication of health inequality. In recent years, the government focused on reducing the inequalities of health issues to develop the health policy irrespective of social factors such as poverty (Crombie & et.

al. , 2005). There is a three-policy approach, which helps in reducing the health inequalities such as “ non- financial competitive incentive for health professionals, financial incentives to improve personal health and libertarian Paternalism” (Oliver, 2008).   In the year, 1948 UK announces that National Health Services (NHS) will develop the health policy to remove health inequalities. NHS also can resolve the inequalities of health issues by taking into various aspects.

Now, health inequalities have become a part of the health policy of the government for the safety of the people (Graham & Kelly, 2004). Public health policy is regarded as a new method to encourage personal concern for health issues. Poor health and a low standard of living are the results of health problems as well as health inequalities. However, the high standard of living of the people in the UK helps to reduce health inequalities. To reduce the health inequalities the government has to focus on poverty as a step remedial measure (King, 1966).   Model of Evaluating Health Policy This model signifies the current population along with the future population and also helps in the evaluation of health as well as health care policies.

The presentation of this model would require some development in the future. This model explains the key characteristics of people which is important to understand the different health issues as well as their distribution. It also explains the risk factors related to health policy. The model intends to identify the risk factors, diseases, and their impact on health care services as well as population health.

The model must allow the operators to create key characteristics, which are important to evaluate the influence of policy replacements. The model signifies all of the components, which takes place in each country (Oderkirk & et. al., 2012). Conclusion From the above discussion, it can be stated that sociology is a scientific study, which plays a vital role in health policy in relation to health inequalities. There are several social factors, which influence the health of the individual as well as families and communities.

It can be observed that health inequalities are a result of poverty as well as a low standard of living. By focusing on social factors such as poverty and more health, inequalities can be reduced. Thus, the UK government is changing health policies to develop the health system.

References

Baker, A. E. & et. al., 2005. Addressing Social Determinants of Health Inequities: Learning From Doing. American Journal of Public Health. [Online] Available at: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1449217/ [Accessed November 30, 2014].

CDC, 2014. Social Determinants of Health. Center for Disease Control and Prevention. [Online] Available at: http://www.cdc.gov/socialdeterminants/FAQ.html [Accessed November 30, 2014].

Crombie, K. I. & et. al., 2005. Closing the Health Inequalities Gap: An International Perspective. World Health Organization, pp. 1-76.

Friedli, L., 2009. Mental Health, Resilience, and Inequalities. World Health Organization, pp. 1-64.

Graham, H. & Kelly, P. M., 2004. Health Inequalities: Concepts, Frameworks, and Policy. Health Development Agency, pp. 1-12.

King, L. M., 1966. Equal and Inclusive: Government Policy Aimed At Reducing Health Inequalities. Cancer Research UK, pp. 3-19.

Mechanic, D., 2014. At the Intersection of Health, Health Care, and Policy. The Role of Sociology in Health Affairs, pp. 1-15.

Oderkirk, J. & et. al., 2012. Toward a New Comprehensive International Health and Health Care Policy Decision Support Tool. Directorate for Employment, Labor, and Social Affairs, pp. 1-176.

Oliver, A., 2008. Reflections on the Development of Health Inequalities Policy in the United Kingdom. London School of Economics and Political Science, pp. 1-30.

Royal College of Nursing, 2012. Health Inequalities and the Social Determinants of Health. Policy and International Department, pp. 1-9.

Reading, L. C. & Wien, F., 2009. Health Inequalities and Social Determinants of Aboriginal Peoples’ Health. National Collaborating Centre for Aboriginal Health, pp. 1-41.

Ramirez, B. K. L. & et. al., No Date. Promoting Health Equity A Resource to Help Communities Address Social Determinants of Health. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, pp. 1-116.

Rosich, J. K. & Hankin, R. J., 2008. Executive Summary: What Do We Know? Key Findings from 50 Years of Medical Sociology. Journal of Health and Social Behavior, pp. 1-9.

Seaman, A., 2014. From Health Behaviours to Health Practices: Critical Perspectives -- A Special Issue of Sociology of Health & Illness. Science, Medicine, and Anthropology, pp. 1-9.

World Health Organization, 2013. Health Inequality Monitoring with a Special Focus on Low- And Middle-Income. WHO Library Cataloguing-in-Publication Data, pp. 1-26.

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