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Describe The Main Inequalities Found In Health Care And Health Status

446 words - 2 pages

Inequalities in health care and health statusInequalities in health care have resulted in disparities in health status. The impact is particularly evident amongst social class V who suffer from lower life expectancies (Townsend: 1992).There is consistent evidence that those in social class V are more likely to be exposed to multiple, environmental risks that portend adverse health consequences. They are more likely to encounter pollution, noise, substandard quality housing and crowding. Typically, lower class working conditions leave labourers open to greater physical danger. Heavy lifting or tasks with repetitive strain plus daily contact with toxins, fumes, ...view middle of the document...

The combination of a GP's likely additional qualifications and greater direct access to x-ray equipment and scanners for those living in affluent areas, results in quicker and more accurate diagnosis (Walters: 1980).Geographically there is an uneven distribution of hospitals and resources within Britain with higher numbers in the South which is paradoxically inverse to the higher concentration of social class V inhabiting the North. Further, there is a greater distribution of teaching hospitals in the South with more staff of all levels available than non-teaching hospitals. A higher proportion of middle class patients are sent to teaching hospitals than working class (Walters: 1980).Private health care is quintessentially solely afforded by the middle class (Pinker: 1988). Private patients will have choice concerning the date of admission, receive care immediately regardless of urgency, have greater attention paid to medical tests and from their consultant. Private patients admitted to an NHS hospital exacerbate the inferiority already experienced by NHS patients with depreciating access to hospital facilities and consultants. Operations can be delayed or canceled as private patients or more urgent cases are placed ahead of the list (Walters: 1980). Pre-eminent medication with increased effectiveness and less side effects is predominantly offered only to private patients due to cost issues.The accumulation of inequalities in access to health care and quality results in variations of health status, with those particularly disadvantaged in Social class V.

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