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Health Care

Social Determinants Of Health

Introduction

Health is the foundation of the growth and development of any nation. If there is any lack of I,t, then the repercussions can be very serious. There are various social determinants of health that are responsible for it. They include all the major aspects that can play a role in affecting one’s health. In this research paper, the various social determinants of health and how they affect health will be discussed. It would include all the major categories under the “SDH Assessment Circle” that affect the well-being of an individual in a society of an Indian community.

Social determinants of health

Social determinants of health are all those factors in which a person lives and grows. It includes the gender, age, and living conditions that can influence one’s health. It consists of all the psychological, biological, and social conditions that may affect the health status of a person. These include food, work, social status, and living conditions, creating a list of ten categories that affect the health of the Indian community (Ferrer, 2018). The major Social Determinants of Health responsible for health and well-being are:

  • Income and its distribution
  • Gender
  • Living and working conditions
  • Education
  • Food
  • The health of the Indian community

In spite of being promoted on so many levels, there is still huge discrimination against the social health being of various communities in India. Due to various factors, the social treatment received by people differs a lot from one another, resulting in a huge gap in terms of life expectancy and health conditions. When described on the basis of the social determinants of health, the following outcome was received.

Income and its distribution– Income is one of the most influential causes when it comes to social determinants of health. There is a huge difference in the health of the rich and the poor people of India. Due to this, the treatment of the same also varied, resulting in more persisting issues among the lower poor section of the community. The GDP of the nation is drastically favoring the rich,h making it difficult to maintain a balance between the two (Goldberg, 2017). This leads to poverty and inequality in the Indian community, making it a huge cause of disparity in the nation.

Gender– Gender inequality in the Indian community is not male-dominated. Being a male dominating society, it supports theories that follow the same notion. Male children are given more preference and better treatment in almost all aspects of life, thus providing them with better health conditions. Many issues of the female gender, like pregnancy and early marriage, are often neglected, leading to many health problems and even death in certain situations (Adler. et al., 2016). Also, most medical treatments are based on data on the male gender, which is not applicable to females at all. This leads to many issues and complications, which, if given proper care, can be easily avoided.

Living and working conditions- This is the most prominent and important determinant of health, and it has a huge effect on the lives and health of the Indian community not only in the country but across the world. The living conditions include the premises in which one resides. They reside in slums where there is too much dir,t causing a lot of diseases. The working conditions are not any different. Unavailability of proper working conditions, poor drinking water, and sewage are some of the prime factors causing the workers to suffer from many health issues. There is no provision for their health conditions, resulting in poor treatment (Cantor et al., 2017). It all takes a huge toll on the health and well-being of the people, forcing them to suffer from innumerable diseases that may even lead to death.

Education– The social determinant of health that can be a huge defining factor in the Indian community is education. The disparity between rich and poor affects various spheres of life, education being one of them. If a person is educated, they can make better-informed decisions when it comes to matters related to their health. Health literacy is also a great matter that allows people to take better care of their health. But the income, along with the lack of education resulting in unemployment in the community, is forcing people to become unaware of many basic diseases that are hard to miss. Lack of education makes it difficult for people to utilize the various policies and schemes run by the government for better health. Poor education in the parents leads the same to the child, allowing them to suffer from many lifelong diseases that could have been avoided if tackled at the right time.

Food habits– You are what you eat. This proverb is very true for all the food habits that prevail in the Indian community. Due to a lack of income and employment, the food habits of the major Indian community are not up to par. People rely on cheap habits to fulfill their basic needs, resulting in a lack of various essential nutrients in their diet (Marmot & Allen, 2014). Also, habits like smoking and drinking make it an added issue that causes a drastic effect on food habits, causing a lot of incurable diseases for the people in the respective community.

Hence, it can be said that the social determinants of health are in serious need of change as far as the Indian community is concerned.

Conclusion

A social determinant of health is a collection of factors causing an effect on the health of an individual. This is because they define the areas that play a role in affecting health and its related aspects. Factors such as education, income, work, etc., play a huge role, resulting in huge differences in the health status of the Indian community. Major steps need to be taken by the respective government to make sure that the conditions are improved.

References

Adler, N. E., Cutler, D. M., Jonathan, J. E., Galea, S., Glymour, M., Koh, H. K., & Satcher, D. (2016). Addressing social determinants of health and health disparities. Discussion Paper, Vital Directions for Health and Health Care Series. National Academy of Medicine, Washington, DC. https://nam. edu/wp-content/uploads/2016/09/addressing-social-determinants of-health-and-health-disparities. Pdf.

Cantor, M. N., Chandras, R., & Pulgarin, C. (2017). FACETS: using open data to measure community social determinants of health. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association.

Ferrer, R. L. (2018). Social Determinants of Health. In Chronic Illness Care (pp. 435-449). Springer, Cham.

Goldberg, D. S. (2017). The Social Determinants of Health & Public Health Practice. In Public Health Ethics and the Social Determinants of Health (pp. 43-50). Springer, Cham.

Marmot, M., & Allen, J. J. (2014). Social determinants of health equity.

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