Biomedicine In Medical Anthropology

1949 Words 8 Pages
In the field of medical anthropology, biomedicine is more complex than just the science. I will attempt to demonstrate some concepts defining biomedicine using an interview conducted with a previously ill person. The interviewee, with the pseudo name of “Pinky”, is a female in her early 20s. About only a year before arriving in Canada, she was recovering from Pneumonia during a MERS (Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome) outbreak in Saudi Arabia. With the help of some of the interview’s anecdotes, I will first analyze how this illness narrative conforms or spills outside of Arthur Kleinman’s concept of disease and illness. Lastly, a careful examination of the interview will reveal the ways biomedicine is professionalized and bureaucratized. …show more content…
Furthermore, Pinky’s father mentioned that she should have been hospitalized if she had all these symptoms, but this did not happen. All of these mistakes discovered by the family was a product of the doctor rushing to determine the disease. Since the mother, being out of the system, took her time and attention, she was able provide better care for her daughter. Moreover, the mother-daughter tie of kinship should also be taken into consideration to understand biomedicine’s impersonal goals. In other words, the objectives of biomedicine illustrate the practitioners’ depersonalized care of their patient. The professional healers would care for a patient just how they would care for any other patient. Since her mother was the one who nursed her back to health, her care was indeed more personalized than the care she would have obtained if Pinky was hospitalized. This exemplifies the contrasting objectives of two different professionals of biomedicine inside and outside the bureaucratic system. Therefore, the depersonalization of the patient’s experience demonstrates how the professional’s impersonal goals and a focus on efficiency are of interest in biomedicine. Second, bureaucracy is a structure within an institution that relies on rules to

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