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Aboriginal Health Care Research Paper

Health is one of the concept notions of the successful and happy life of people. If a person has problems with health, he or she cannot live the full life, enjoy it and feel happy. For this reason, medicine as a sphere of science has been rapidly developing all over the years. People were always searching for the ways of treating and healing people for the minimization of their suffering. However, the development and treatment do not always influence all the nations or even ethnic groups of one nation. That is why the state of health and the level of health care may differ from one group to the other.

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Such an example may be noticed among the representatives of Aboriginal groups of people in Australia. Unfortunately, their health level and life length are lower than Non-Aboriginal people have. What is more, they are in need of treatment much more often than the other groups of people. A lot of the body systems are quite weak and worse adapted to life in whole. For sure, such differences have their own background including treatment specifications as well. Nevertheless, nowadays, one may obtain more information if a person studies the social theories and approaches to the healthcare treatment among the Aboriginal people.

In the context of the policy of the world, medical sociology has always taken the minor place after such significant issues as hierarchy and construction of society. In such way, one should understand that people considered less significant issues of the “physical or mental state of the person, while problems of social organization and structure were prominent” (Williams, 2003). As a result, such priorities had their own impact on the health state of people as a whole.

On the contrary to the ideas presented above, Aboriginal people still have their methods of treatment that are widely used when a person is sick. What is more, their views on the medical treatment are tightly bounded to the social views and preferences.

Speaking about methods of treatment from the healthcare perspective, one should not disregard the popularity of holistic approach of the social theory. It is frequently followed by the Aboriginal people and may be considered to be the key concept in the health care system of this group of people. This approach is based on the perception of a sick person as a whole unit that is in need of treatment. From the medical point of view, one does not regard a person or his or her problems with some organs or parts of the body separately. Any treatment requires the examination of the whole body as all the systems of an organism are interconnected (Huljev & Pandak, 2016). The theory stands for the dependence of one organ from the another that leads to dysfunction of the body in whole, in case if one organ is sick. Moreover, except for the interdependence of all the parts of the body, the theory claims that “mind and body are integrated and inseparable” (Our Holistic Approach, 2018). It means that with providing health care, one should take into account his or her mental state as well.

Such an approach of takes significant place on structure-agency continuum and present itself as an issue not only of health care but “larger political, economic and cultural forces” (Williams, 2003). In addition, it plays an important role in the public healthcare and medical training of the practitioners. The Aboriginal people treated in this way are provided with the complex healthcare based on the holistic approach, even though the outcomes are not as positive as in the experience of Non-Aboriginal people. In this context, the social determinants of health also known as SDH “are the socioeconomic factors operating in the background that ultimately lead to poor health outcomes” (Background on SDH, 2018). Consequently, the holistic theory partially explains the SDH of the Aboriginal people according to the set of factors. First of all, the treatment of all the body without focusing on a specific organ or body system cannot be regarded as an effective treatment. For sure, medical practitioners have to take into account treatment measurement and their influence on the other parts of the body while treating the one that is sick, but the health care according to the holistic approach minimize treatment effect as such.

One cannot disregard the impact of some medicine or specific procedures on human’s organs, but it is also important to be focused on the treatment of the body part that is sick. If the practitioners will not be focused and will perceive, for instance, kidney failure as the sickness of all the body, they are unlikely to succeed in their treatment (Gao et al., 2008). In addition, the aspect of mental health that plays an important role in the holistic approach is not obligatory in the process of treatment. One should regard it and provide treatment to mental health, only if some norms deviations are noticeable. The overall process of treatment should be directed to the specific sickness or disease.

Another social theory that refers to the health care of Aboriginal people is the theory of the social construction of reality (Kleinman, 2010). The idea of the theory lays in the belief that the material basis does not matter in the real world. However, the state of the world is preconditioned with “the socially and culturally legitimated ideas, practices, and things” (Kleinman, 2010). The idea states that the health care depends on the cultural or ethnic preferences, beliefs and readiness to perceive the newly developed medicine treatment. Taking into account financial status, it also refers to the treatment level the person can afford to have.

At the same time, these ideas include issues of financial status in the world. The relationship between culture, ethnicity, and money is a key concept in the world of Aboriginal people. The role of money is inevitable if a person desires to obtain a decent level of health treatment. That is why Aboriginal people who are culturally doomed to poverty cannot be provided with the high level of treatment (Morgan, Slade & Morgan, 1997). The level of poverty preconditioned by cultural and ethnic means is one of those social determinants that define the level of treatment an Aboriginal person can get. In other words, health outcomes are directly dependant on the financial status of people.

In the sight of this issue, one can also argue about the major factor that influences health outcomes of Aboriginal people. While, on the one hand, it seems to be culture, on the other hand, one can call it to be poverty. However, one may also claim that these two factors are interdependent. The cultural background provides an experience of various practices that were used as the main procedures in the process of medical treatment. Often, Aboriginal people neglected traditional medicine and used their own practices that were likely to treat people from their both body and mental diseases. It is not a secret that sometimes these practices do not always have a scientific background and were invented as methods of not traditional medicine. Therefore, such practices are not always effective and, for sure, cannot overcome the treatment outcomes of the traditional medicine based on scientific researches (Hole et al., 2015). In addition, such practices are not always used by the qualified professionals that make their effectiveness less possible. Besides, a lot of procedures are applied as the experimental ones that make the process of treatment even further from the medical healthcare.

At the same time, the poverty rate also plays an important role in the ability to obtain health care at the high level. As an example, one should take into account the fact that the unemployment rate of the Aboriginal people is 20% comparing to 6% of Non-Aboriginal people (Walter, n.d.). For sure, it decreases chances of the first ones to pay for the qualitative medical treatment. In this case, the poverty level and financial possibilities of people are those social determinants that correspond to the affordable health care people can get. Consequently, the higher level of poverty leads to the worse medical treatment and to the more health problems that presuppose the short lives of Aboriginal people (Cerón et al., 2016). Even if one does not take the material notions, financial status is decisive in the provision of qualified care of qualified practitioners.

Taking into account all the factor and peculiarities of both social theories, one should also consider the importance of the biomedical model in the process of healthcare. As a matter of fact, this model regards a healthy person as an individual deprived of pain, sicknesses, diseases, or any other disturbing problems considering a physical or mental state of a person (Sheridan & Radmacher, 1992). This model of health care does not include any social factors that may presuppose the health state of the patient or his or her personal subjective ideas about health state. The treatment is more focused on the physical processes and procedures directed on the personal treatment of a human. The central objective of this model includes only biological factors of the person and excludes any other possible characteristics. It helps the practitioners objectively examine patient and provide the necessary treatment.

For example, in the process of medical treatment, a practitioner will not examine the individual psychological state of a person. It also excludes possible environmental and social influences, and take into account only biological and physical characteristics and the deviations from the normal state. Thus, a person will rather get the course of procedures to eliminate pathologies rather than be studied as an object of society. In general, all of these models and theories are applied in practice in the nowadays world. However, some categories of people, under the influence of numerous social factors, do not obtain decent health care. As an example, one may regard Aboriginal people who always have the lower rates in the health care system and because of that have a poor quality of health, as well as, a shorter lifespan. For sure, these problems can be solved, for the condition of the choosing of a correct social model that will not discriminate rights of any group of people.

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