This assignment prompt asks students to provide replies to two different discussion posts related to the topic of social stratification and healthcare injustice. reflecting on how income and social standing can impact access to healthcare and using conflict theory to explain healthcare injustice and inequity.

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This assignment prompt asks students to provide replies to two different discussion posts related to the topic of social stratification and healthcare injustice. reflecting on how income and social standing can impact access to healthcare and using conflict theory to explain healthcare injustice and inequity.

Replies #1
 
#5- Which of the three theoretical approaches (functionalist, conflict, or symbolic interactionist) would you use to explain why healthcare injustice and inequity occurs and what to do about it? I would use the Functionalist because they might argue that healthcare injustice occurs due to structural deficiencies in the healthcare system that hinder its ability to provide equal access and quality care for all. The functionalist perspective emphasizes that good health and effective medical care are essential for a society’s ability to function. Ill health impairs our ability to perform our roles in society, and if too many people are unhealthy, society’s functioning and stability suffer. (Saylordotorg, n.d.). Addressing healthcare injustice from a functionalist perspective might involve structural reforms within the healthcare system to ensure more equitable distribution of resources and services.
#6- Injustice in healthcare can have a big impact on the duration the social stratification system lasts. Recent studies have shown that despite the improvements in the overall health of the country, racial and ethnic minorities experience a lower quality of health care—they are less likely to receive routine medical care and face higher rates of morbidity and mortality than nonminorities. (American Medical Association, 2023). Unequal access to healthcare can make it difficult for members of minority or lower socioeconomic groups to get necessary medical care. This can generate a vicious cycle of disadvantage for lower health outcomes, fewer opportunities for job and education, and a general decline in social mobility can all be caused by inadequate access to healthcare. The healthcare system can maintain social stratification through various mechanisms that contribute to unequal access and outcomes based on socioeconomic factors such as, implementing policies that ensure equal access to quality care, addressing social determinants of health, and combating biases in healthcare delivery are crucial steps in creating a more equitable healthcare system. Yes, I feel healthcare injustice is harming society as a whole in various ways such as, public health disparities, Increased Inequality and the negative Impact on Public Trust.
Replies #2
 
When considering the social standings between myself, my parents, and then my grandparents, it is very interesting to me how we are all different. One of the main differences between all of us is our level of education and when we received it. Neither one of my grandparents went to college, my grandfather was in the Navy and served for many years before moving on to working in more of an industrial setting. My grandmother’s main job was raising four children, but she also worked random jobs like cashier, teacher’s assistant, and secretary. My parents did not attend college either until later in life. My father served in the Air Force and after having their second child, he went on to work at the Walmart distribution center in my hometown. My mom also worked random jobs in the many places she lived until my parents decided to raise us in Alabama, there she worked at the same Walmart distribution center as my dad. My mom decided after my siblings and I were a little bit older that she wanted to go to college, she started the journey of nursing school when she was 38. My dad waited until all four of us kids were grown and out of college before he started back, so he started when he was 54 to for a computer science degree. I went to college right after graduating high school and graduated from nursing school when I was 22. I think the difference in education and when we received our education put us all in a different social standing. I am 28 now and have been a nurse for 5 years. When my mom was 28 she was chasing my dad around the country in the air force while caring for my two brothers. I think just having my early foundation in a career and being able to get that before I had a family and bills to worry about changes my social standing. I was able to utilize my career and education to earn a decent income for myself and create a foundation upon which I could grow. My parents and grandparents had to also create a similar foundation with many jobs that were paying minimum wage as well as caring for children. While both my parents and grandparents have great lives now, I feel that if they had the same opportunities I had then they would have benefited as well.  
In question five it asks about which theoretical approaches I would use to explain healthcare injustice and inequity, and I would use conflict theory. Conflict theory is characterized by a society that is in competition for resources (Conerly, 2021). If you looked at healthcare and the patient diversity, people of lower income or uninsured individuals are struggling to receive and be able to afford the care they need. During 2020 or as we all call it the COVID year, there was research published that said 8.6% or 28 million people did not have health insurance (Bureau, 2021). When looking at conflict theory there is this tension between the higher class that has power, think government or healthcare establishments, and then the lower-class citizens. It was a scary year; people were dying from this crazy virus and uninsured individuals had to think about getting potentially lifesaving care vs the amount of debt they would acquire to simply get the medical help they needed. I think for anything to change the healthcare establishments must start letting some power go and relieving some of the tension. Having free accessible healthcare could change so many lives, even just urgent cares that do not cost an arm and leg for antibiotics or a vaccine could help so many people. There needs to be a better balance of where money is being spent in healthcare, and I feel it could change how people view the health

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