The Health Care System Of The Modern United States Essay

1210 Words Dec 19th, 2016 5 Pages
In the modern United States, it has become common practice to finagle the health care system by bargaining with doctors or pursuing alternative treatment plans. This culture of taking individual health and healthcare into one’s own hands has been regarded by sociologists as “‘doing’ health care.” One of the first massive, country-wide instances of “doing” health care was during the AIDS epidemic in the 1980s and early 90s. Although hundreds of thousands of people were dropping dead left and right as a result of the disease, social institutions, such as the government and health care industries, essentially refused to research a treatment drug. It was particularly hard for this group of people to gain traction with their movement because the large majority of HIV-positive people during this era were gay men. Since homosexuality was viewed as deviant, people were less likely to support their campaign. Even if people did not have a negative view of homosexuality, the culture of personal responsibility in the US helped keep a drug off the shelves. Due to the nature of HIV as a sexually transmitted disease, and therefore preventable, AIDS became a punishment for having unprotected sex. A 2012 documentary about the AIDS epidemic, entitled How to Survive a Plague, follows a primary group of activists as they fought for a drug to treat those who were HIV positive. How to Survive a Plague shows one of the largest, and most important, historical instances of “doing” health care.…

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