The United States spends billions of dollars annually on social and economic policies aimed at improving the lives of its citizens, but the health consequences associated with these policies are rarely considered. In Making Americans Healthier, a group of multidisciplinary experts shows how social and economic policies seemingly unrelated to medical well-being have dramatic consequences for the health of the American people. Most previous research concerning problems with health and healthcare in the United States has focused narrowly on issues of medical care and insurance coverage, but Making Americans Healthier demonstrates the important health consequences that policymakers overlook in traditional cost-benefit evaluations of social policy. The contributors examine six critical policy areas: civil rights, education, income support, employment, welfare, and neighborhood and housing. Among the important findings in this book, David Cutler and Adriana Lleras-Muney document the robust relationship between educational attainment and health, and estimate that the health benefits of education may exceed even the well-documented financial returns of education. Pamela Herd, James House, and Robert Schoeni discover notable health benefits associated with the Supplemental Security Income Program, which provides financial support for elderly and disabled Americans. George Kaplan, Nalini Ranjit, and Sarah Burgard document a large and unanticipated improvement in the health of African-American women following the enactment of civil rights legislation in the 1960s. Making Americans Healthier presents ground-breaking evidence that the health impact of many social policies is substantial. The important findings in this book pave the way for promising new avenues for intervention and convincingly demonstrate that ultimately social and economic policy is health policy. A Volume in the National Poverty Center Series on Poverty and Public Policy
Managing the Fiscal Metropolis: The Financial Policies, Practices, and Health of Suburban Municipalities is an important book. This first comprehensive analysis of the financial condition, management, and policy making of local governments in a metropolitan region offers local governments currently dealing with the Great Recession a better understanding of what affects them financially and how to operate with less revenue.
Hendrick’s groundbreaking study covers 264 Chicago suburban municipalities from the late 1990s to the present. In it she identifies and describes the primary factors and events that affect municipal financial decisions and financial conditions, explores the strategies these governments use to manage financial conditions and solve financial problems, and looks at the impact of contextual factors and stresses on government financial decisions. Managing the Fiscal Metropolis offers new evidence about the role of contextual factors— including other local governments—in the financial condition of municipalities and how municipal financial decisions and practices alter these effects. The wide economic and social diversity of the municipalities studied make its findings relevant on a national scale.
Studies have shown that married couples have better mental and physical health than unmarried people. Leading scholars and policy makers propose that marriage can provide similar benefits to people in both same-sex and different-sex relationships. Though research on the health and well-being of same-sex couples is a new and growing field, Marriage and Health: The Well-Being of Same-Sex Couples represents the forefront of marriage and health research and the far-reaching policy implications for the health of same-sex couples. This collection of essays presents new perspectives that address current opportunities and challenges faced by people in same-sex unions in multiple domains of well-being, including physical and mental health, social support, socialized behaviors, and stigmas. The book offers a broad view of same-sex couples’ experiences by examining not only marriage and civil unions, but also dating and cohabiting relationships as well as same-sex sexual experiences outside of relationships.
When ethnomethodologist Albert Robillard began to suffer the symptoms of motor-neuron disease, he realized he was a living laboratory for revealing the countless taken-for-granted methods people use to produce being together. Meaning of a Disability is a detailed autobiography of the experiences and trained observations of a university professor who became paralyzed in mid-life.
With his loss of speech, Robillard was forced to communicate through a lip-reading system developed by his wife and student assistants. Restricted by this form of communication and his paralysis, he soon learned the frustrations of making his meaning known. Hospital nurses wrongly anticipated his words. Those who translated for him inevitably distorted his meaning. Most of all, the casual pace of conversational give-and-take was disrupted. Old friends would leave before Robillard could provide the expected interactional response.
Finding himself isolated due to his lack of both mobility and vocalization, Robillard threw himself into his academic work and began to develop settings and methods where he could satisfactorily interact with others. A researcher and writer experienced in describing the bodily and verbal methods used to coordinate and construct the most ordinary of social forms, Robillard joins in this book both his years of sociological training and his time with illness to talk with moving and illuminating analysis about a broad range of matters. Moving gracefully from examinations of narratives about disability and illness, the stigmatizing things that healthcare providers unwittingly say to their patients, and communication problems in the intensive care unit, to more personal reflections on anger, isolation, and stories of tragedy, Robillard also discusses disability in the workplace and such seemingly simple topics as computers and vacations. Meaning of a Disability is the personal story of a highly trained observer forced to confront simultaneously the limits of the disabled person's social world and the unspoken assumptions about meaningful interaction -- as he struggles with the daily difficulties of maintaining his identity.
Meaning of a Disability will interest a wide audience, including healthcare professionals, disabled people, and caretakers as well as academics studying ethnomethodology, health and illness, conversation, symbolic interaction, storytelling, and most aspects of lived experience.
As part of a larger study on the future of the post–World War II liberal international order, RAND researchers analyze the health of the existing order and offer implications for future U.S. policy. The study’s overall conclusion is that the postwar order continues to enjoy many elements of stability but is increasingly threatened by major geopolitical and domestic socioeconomic trends that call into question the order’s fundamental assumptions.
Medicine, Religion, and Health: Where Science and Spirituality Meet will be the first title published in the new Templeton Science and Religion Series, in which scientists from a wide range of fields distill their experience and knowledge into brief tours of their respective specialties. In this, the series' maiden volume, Dr. Harold G. Koenig provides an overview of the relationship between health care and religion that manages to be comprehensive yet concise, factual yet inspirational, and technical yet easily accessible to nonspecialists and general readers.
Focusing on the scientific basis for integrating spirituality into medicine, Koenig carefully summarizes major trends, controversies, and the latest research from a wide variety of disciplines and provides plausible and compelling theoretical explanations for what has thus far emerged in this relatively young field of study. Medicine, Religion, and Health begins by defining the principal terms and then moves on to a brief history of the role that religion has played in medicine before delving into the current state of research. Koenig devotes several chapters to exploring the outcomes of specific studies in fields such as mental health, cardiovascular disease, and mortality. The book concludes with a review of the clinical applications that can be derived from the research. Koenig also supplies several detailed appendices that will aid readers of all levels looking for further information.
Medicine, Religion, and Health will shed new light on important contemporary issues and will whet readers' appetites for more information on this fascinating, complex, and controversial area of research, clinical activity, and popular discussion. It will find a welcome home on the bookshelves of students, researchers, clinicians, and other health professionals in a variety of disciplines.
By the middle of the twenty-first century, one out of every six Americans will be of Mexican descent; and as health care becomes of increasing concern to all Americans, the particular needs of Mexican Americans will have to be more thoroughly addressed. Mexican Americans and Health explains how the health of Mexican-origin people is often related to sociodemographic conditions and genetic factors, while historical and political factors influence how Mexican Americans enter the health care system and how they are treated once they access it. It considers such issues as occupational hazards for Mexican-origin agricultural workers—including pesticide poisoning, heat-related conditions, and musculoskeletal disorders—and women's health concerns, such as prenatal care, preventable cancers, and domestic violence. The authors clearly discuss the health status of Mexican Americans relative to the rest of the U.S. population, interweaving voices of everyday people to explain how today's most pressing health issues have special relevance to the Mexican American community:
- how values such as machismo, familismo, and marianismo influence care-seeking decisions and treatment of illness;
- how factors such as cultural values, socioeconomic status, peer pressure, and family concerns can contribute to substance abuse;
- how cultural attitudes toward sex can heighten the risk of AIDS—and how approaches to AIDS prevention and education need to reflect core cultural values such as familismo, respeto, and confianza. The book also addresses concerns of Mexican Americans regarding the health care system. These include not only access to care and to health insurance but also the shortage of bilingual and bicultural health care professionals. This coverage stresses not only the importance of linguistic competency but also the need to understand folklore illnesses, herbal remedies, and spiritual practices that can delay the treatment of illness and either complement or compromise treatment. Of all the issues that face the contemporary Mexican American community, none is as important to its very survival as health and health care. This timely book gives readers a broad understanding of these complex issues and points the way toward a healthier future for all people of Mexican origin. Mexican Americans and Health and Chicano Popular Culture are the first volumes in the series The Mexican American Experience, a cluster of modular texts designed to provide greater flexibility in undergraduate education. Each book deals with a single topic concerning the Mexican American population. Instructors can create a semester-length course from any combination of volumes, or may choose to use one or two volumes to complement other texts.
'Complete freedom from disease and from struggle is almost incompatible with the process of living, ' Rene Dubos asserted in this classic essay on ecology and health. All the accomplishments of science and technology, he argued, will not bring the utopian dream of universal well-being, because they ignore the dynamic process of adaptation to a constantly changing environment that every living organism must face. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
During the first half of the twentieth century, representatives of the French colonial health services actively strove to expand the practice of Western medicine in the frontier colony of Cambodia. But as the French physicians ventured beyond their colonial enclaves, they found themselves negotiating with the plurality of Cambodian cultural practices relating to health and disease. These negotiations were marked by some success, a great deal of misunderstanding, and much failure.
Bringing together colorful historical vignettes, social and anthropological theory, and quantitative analyses, Mixed Medicines examines these interactions between the Khmer, Cham, and Vietnamese of Cambodia and the French, documenting the differences in their understandings of medicine and revealing the unexpected transformations that occurred during this period—for both the French and the indigenous population.