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Experience of Illness and Disability - Essay Example

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This has been due to the realisation that a number of social factors take effect upon human health and well-being. This may be in terms of social…
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Experience of Illness and Disability
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Download file to see previous pages This study analyses Michael’s case, where interview reveals a number of social perspectives on his view regarding health. Through drawing from literature concepts and critically analysing the case study, specific aspects that will be covered are the lay health beliefs, illness behaviour, social support and practitioner-client interaction as they gradually progress in Michael’s illness narrative. The guiding thesis for this study is that a sociological viewpoint is pivotal in establishing the experience of illness and thus determining health outcomes.
Studying lay health beliefs is critical to the healthcare industry due to a number of reasons; it helps understand practitioner-client relationships; it aids design of effective health education programs; most of healthcare work is carried out by lay people in terms of self-care or friend-family care (Nettleton 2006, pp. 35-36). Lay ideas and concepts about health are socially mediated and vary according to several considerations including time, social location, cultural contexts and socio-economic conditions. There appears to be points of divergences and convergences between expert knowledge and lay beliefs about explanations and definitions of health, health behaviour and the relationship between health maintenance and disease prevention (36). According to Gabe, Bury and Elston (2004, pp. 135-136), individual beliefs about illness, health and healthcare are vital in establishing illness behaviour such as non-compliance and the decision to visit a physician among others. Such beliefs are shaped by broader cultural and social factors that are also context dependent, influencing the actions taken by the individual for instance through the lay referral system where individuals consult family and friends about visiting a doctor (67). Besides, lay beliefs about health influence individual lifestyles and risks that have a bearing on such individuals’ health and ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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