Inequalities in Health & Illness 1 Flashcards Preview

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What does the biomedical model of health and illness suggest about the cause of disease and what is meant by "health"?

It locates the cause of disease in the individual
It sees each health problem as being in isolation

It sees health is a biological process


What does the social model of health and illness suggest about the cause of disease and what is meant by "health"?

It locates the cause of disease in the relationship between individual and society

It sees health as a social construct - it cannot be understood by focusing on biological processes alone


What is the difference in the way the biomedical and social models of health and illness focus on risk factors?

Biomedical focuses on genetics and clinical risk factors

It focuses on the risk factors on an individual level

Social focuses on social structures and risk factors

It focuses on risk factors to ill health being related to the individual and society


What is the difference in what is highlighted by the biomedical and social models of health and illness?

Biomedical highlights risk behaviours and individual behavioural change

Social highlights social change


What is the key focus of the social model of illness and health?

It locates health and illness as a social construct that cannot be understood by only focusing on biological processes


How does the fact that there have been changes in adolescent mental-health behaviours over the last 10 years relate to the social model?

There is no change in genetics or biology that accounts for the change in behaviour

The environment has changed, and certain behaviours have changed due to social factors


How does wealth relate to life expectancy?

Wealth does not necessarily equate to life expectancy


Why is a high life expectancy not always a positive?

Life expectancy describes how long you will live, but not how well you will live

It does not take into account quality of life


What are the UN indicators of poverty and deprivation?

1. dirty water

2. lack of sanitation

3. lack of shelter

4. poor nutrition and insufficient calories

5. lack of essential medical and maternity care

6. no access to education

7. information deprivation


What do poverty and deprivation lead to?

1. high infant mortality

2. high morbidity

3. premature death


What is meant by absolute poverty?

A condition where household income is insufficient to afford basic necessities of life

e.g. food, shelter, clothing


When is someone defined as living in absolute poverty?

If a person is living in conditions that meet at least 2 of the UN indicators


What is meant by relative poverty?

A condition where household income is a certain percentage below median income for that country


How is relative poverty defined within the EU?

Having a household income that is < 60% of the national median


What is the Index of Multiple Deprivation (IMD) used to measure?

It measures how well certain areas are doing compared to others

It is about the earnings of the area in which you live, not individual earnings


What are the 7 domains of deprivation included in the Index of Multiple Deprivation (IMD)?

1. income

2. employment

3. education

4. health

5. crime

6. barriers to housing and services

7. living environment

It is mainly driven by income and employment


What is health inequality that is present from birth in the UK?

The area in which the child is born

e.g. a boy born to a family in the most deprived area of Blackpool can expect to live for 67 years

a boy born to a family in the least deprived area of Hart can expect to live for 89 years


How can the area in which you are born affect health outcomes?

In more deprived areas, there is a reduction in life expectancy

People also live a shorter length of time being disability-free


What is meant by human agency?

This is the capacity of an individual to act independently

They have the ability to make choices and impose those choices


What constrains human agency?

Social structures constrain the ability to exercise choices that are made by an individual


What is meant by social structures?

Society is composed of:

1. an organised set of institutions

2. patterns of relationships


How can society affect decisions made relating to health?

Social structure, such as media, wealth, law, economy, social networks, family, religion can affect the way in which choices are made and imposed


How is women's agency constrained to an extent?

Through the social context of family

They have increasing agency over the choices they make with their bodies e.g. contraceptives


What did Pierre Bourdieu - Habitus state about social classes?

It is not the type of work you do that determines your place in society, it is your interactions with society

e.g. it easier for people with relatives in the medical profession to get a place in medical school


What was the focus of Habitus on the maintenance of social status?

Social order and status are maintained across generations

Access to cultural, symbolic and social capital produces and reproduces inequality


How is socioeconomic status related to health?

Mortality rate decreases as socioeconomic status increases

e.g. much lower mortality rate amongst professionals than manual labour


What are social structures and what do they determine?

They are a product of our social interactions

They determine distribution of power and capital (economic, cultural and social)


How can social structures lead to inequality?

They constrain our agency through the distribution of power and creation of norms of behaviour

Inequality of opportunity if social structures favour some groups over others


What is meant by intersectionality?

It identifies that interlocking systems of power have a compounded impact


What is meant by inequality?

A systematic difference in the distribution of power, resources and opportunity in a social system