While The Rich And The Poor Are Getting Healthier, The Gap Between Them In Health Terms Is Getting Wider

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorUniversity, Bachelor's June 2001

download word file, 12 pages 5.0

Downloaded 91 times

"˜While the rich and the poor are both getting healthier, the gap between them in health terms is getting wider'.

In accordance with unit tutor guidance, I will select and apply relevant evidence so that an evaluation of the issue: - "˜inequalities in health and the widening gap between rich and poor' can be explored.

A definition of health will be provided to show there is a widening gap in today's society.

Discussion and evaluation of others factors which affect inequality in health, such as: - social trends, the publics access to health care, measuring class within the evidence that the middle classes are expanding, social stratification, gender, age, ethnicity, mortality, morbidity and how professions in power affect inequalities.

Sociological explanations of the inequality in health will be discussed, these include, the structural/material explanation "" poor health reflects structural inequalities. The artefact explanation "" differences are artificial. The social selection explanation "" healthy people are upwardly mobile, and the behavioural/cultural explanation "" ill health is a product of unhealthy behaviour.

Health is generally regarded as an individual and biological phenomenon "" a person is ill because of a virus or germ, or perhaps because he/she has inherited some problem. If this were the case, one would expect illness to be randomly distributed across the population with virtually everyone having similar chance of being ill. This is not the case: the lower the social class, the greater the chance of morbidity (sickness) and the lower the age of death.

(Moore, 1994, p.241) The governments report, Opportunity for All: Tackling Poverty and Social Exclusion (Department of Social Security, 1999), identified poor health as one of the major problems associated with low income.

(Benzeval, 2000) There has been considerable overall improvement in the nations health in the twentieth century. Life expectancy for women...