Explaining of the Sociological Perspectives in Health and Social Care

Last Updated: 20 Apr 2022
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There are 3 main perspectives:
• The Structural/Functional Perspective – Relationship between parts of society, i.e. how aspects of society are functional and adaptive. – Macro – all aspects of society contribute to the way society functions as a whole. For example the government pays for school teachers and schools and bin collection etc. and in return citizens pay tax. The country couldn’t run without the citizens paying tax.

People who believe in this theory believe that member of society have to work together and agree on what will be best for society as a whole. • The Conflict Perspective – Competition for scarce resources, i.e. how the elite control the poor and weak. – Macro – this theory focuses on the negative aspects and conflicted areas of society, the ever changing areas. – Society is ever struggling and inevitably changing sometimes it is beneficial and other times it is negative and violent. Inequality is widely spread. To one partner this is the symbol of eternal love.

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To the other a mere financial expense.
• Symbolic/Interaction Perspective – Use of symbols, i.e. face to face interactions. – Micro – how people interact with each other and how they interpret symbols and the details of everyday life. People are seen to attach meanings to symbols, and then act up on these meanings. Words are not static they have a meaning or meanings but the way in which the sender means/says the word could be taken differently by the receiver. Micro – level of analysis is of small social patterns

Macro – level of analysis is of large social patterns

The principal of sociological perspective are:

Functionalism- an important part of some accounts of functionalism is the idea of multiple realisation. Since, according to standard functionalist theories, mental states are the corresponding functional role, mental states can be sufficiently explained without taking into account the underlying physical medium (e.g. the brain, neurons, etc.) that realizes such states;
one need only take into account the higher-level functions in the cognitive system.

Marxism- is an economic political theory by which law is considered an instrument of oppression and control, and which the ruling class uses against the working class. Marxism holds at its core a critical analysis of capitalism and a theory of social change. The powerful and innovative analytical methods Marx introduced have influenced a broad range of disciplines.

Feminism- has altered predominant perspectives in a wide range of areas within Western society, ranging from culture to law. Feminist activists have campaigned for women's legal rights (rights of contract, property rights, voting rights); for women's right to bodily integrity and autonomy, for abortion rights. A social institution can be defined as an organizational system which functions to satisfy basic social needs by providing safe and suitable environment. Institutions such as: government – public services

religion – place of worship
education – schools
economics – areas
family – social services

Primary socialisation is when you learn the basic day to day norms and values through socialisation. This occurs during childhood. Secondary socialisation is when learning what is the appropriate behavior as a member of a smaller group within the larger society. To learn how to react to the situation you find yourself in. This occurs with teenagers and adults, and involves smaller changes than those occurring in primary socialisation. WHO (world health organisation): definition of Health

Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity. 3 main factors that influence health


Physical environment

Social environment – an individual’s choice and peer pressure of ‘friends’ e.g. doing drugs may be forced by peers. Home, lifestyle, nutrition and income all affect health also. Concepts of health

Personal responsibility – if you keep yourself clean and tidy (covering up cuts) then you minimize the risk of infection. If you do exercise and eat good food you build up your immune system. Health as the absence of illness – if you remain in a healthy state then it’s unlikely for you to become ill. All of these affect a person’s health.

Concepts of ill-health
Ill health as a disease – if a disease can be cured it can only be done by medicine or treatment Ill health as a disorder – a disorder can be treated sometimes and can be done by changing your lifestyle or with help from medicine or treatment.

Definitions of disability
Impairment = a loss or abnormality of physical bodily structure or function, of logic-psychic origin, or physiological or anatomical origin Disability = any limitation or function loss deriving from impairment that prevents the performance of an activity in the time-lapse considered normal for a human being Handicap = the disadvantaged condition deriving from impairment or disability limiting a person performing a role considered normal in respect of their age, sex and social and cultural factors The medical model sees a person’s impairment as the cause of disability. The person with a disability to adapt to society instead of society adapting to them. Socio-medical model

Recognises links between social life and the body.
The social model is based on the premise that people are not disabled because of illness or impairment. Instead, they are disabled because of how society is constructed.

Disability is a deficiency or abnormality.
Disability is a difference.
Being disabled is negative.
Being disabled, in itself, is neutral.
Disability resides in the individual.

Disability derives from interaction between the individual and society. The remedy for disability-related problems is cure or normalization of the individual. The remedy for disability-related problems are a change in the interaction between the individual and society. The agent of remedy is the professional.

The agent of remedy can be the individual, an advocate, or anyone who affects the arrangements between the individual and society. Even though people who have disabilities are very different, we are all different ages, races, and different kinds of disabilities, we still share a lot of things in common – such as a common history and common experiences of being discriminated against (being treated different because of our disability). Medicalisation

Tendency of normal life stages, experience and events as needing medical intervention because they are seen to be risky and problematic. Clinical iceberg – medical issues, the amount recognised etc. is just like the tip of an ice berg

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Explaining of the Sociological Perspectives in Health and Social Care. (2016, Jul 22). Retrieved from https://phdessay.com/explaining-of-the-sociological-perspectives-in-health-and-social-care/

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