Instruction: Identify one pressing social problem concerning health and health care inequalities in the U.S. that concerns you and offer a solution (e.g., policy, program, law etc.) to address the problem you have identified.
Requirement: You are asked to select one article from “Overview and Readings” and then identify one social problem discussed in the article and offer a solution to address the problem. Also, respond to at least one of your classmates’ comments. The social problem must relate to conceptual ideas, theoretical frameworks, and research evidence regarding health and health care that we have discussed in this class. You should demonstrate the link to those ideas by directly relating the social problem to book chapters, lectures notes, and research articles that you have read in this class. The solution that you offer can be creative, innovative, and visionary! After all, you have a big role to play to make this world a better place!
I do not consider any solution to be right or wrong. It is your responsibility to convince me why a given solution may work or may work better. You should provide a reasoned argument based on available evidence. This course has provided you a necessary tool box to move beyond our individual observations or biases and to look for general societal patterns. As you may be aware by now that the social problems are not creation of any individual action. They are often due to policies, program, legislation, and historical injustices. You should try to identify root cases of the social problem. For instance, if you see higher smoking prevalence among lower educated individuals (as a social group or as a collective), you should ask why? Do they not know that smoking is harmful? Is it that their working conditions are stressful? Do they use smoking as a coping mechanism? What can you do to address that problem? Can we create better working conditions by instituting policies that provides them better living wages or more job security?
As you discuss the merits of your solution, you should talk about what information (e.g., theory, conceptual frameworks, research evidence, statistics) you gained from this class makes you believe the efficacy or effectiveness of the proposed solution? For instance, if you propose a behavioral intervention to reduce smoking, would that be able to reduce or eradicate (or do both) education-based inequalities in health? What does the fundamental cause of disease theory say about that?