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Understanding the Sick Role Model

What are the four aspects of the sick role model (Parsons 1951)? According to Parsons, medicine is an institution for the social control of deviant behavior. Do you agree or disagree with this view? Why or why not?

What is the patient-physician relationship according to Cockerham? Which two sociological examples of the sick role, as evidenced by existing research, do you think are most appropriate?

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The Four Aspects of the Sick Role Model According to Talcott Parsons, 1951 (Pages 436-437):

1. The exemption from normal social role responsibilities

2. The exemption from taken care of oneself. The element of dependency (page 285). The concept relates to a person who is disabled who needs to be "taken care of" or just relies on others to perform specific needs

Parsons states that the first two above are conditional with respect to relative legitimation which I mention in the next point.

3. The undesirability of the state of being ill. This is the sick role being an institutionalized role (page 312). This element of the sick role shares characteristics with criminality. Specifically, the sick role involves a "relative legitimacy." In other words, the sick person accepts the responsibility to get well

4. The obligation to seek "technically competent help."

I have attached a PowerPoint presentation I came across which provides a general overview of:
Sick Role, Deviance, and Labelling by Kai-Lit Phua, PhD, FLMI (Associate Professor, School of Medicine and Health Sciences, Monash University, Malaysia)

According to Parsons, medicine is an institution for the social control of deviant behaviour. Do you agree or disagree with this view? Why or why not?

I will provide my opinion on this statement.

I do believe medicine to be an institution for the social control of behaviour in general which would include deviant behaviour. I agree with Parsons (page 438) that when a person seeks the medical advice of a physician s/he is agrees to cooperate with the physician for a "common task." Thus the physician is sought out for advice and for treatment that the patient does not already have knowledge of and cannot acquire on ...

Solution Summary

This solution will assist the student in identifying the Sick Role Model by Talcott Parsons and discuss its characteristics with respect to social behaviour. The solution will also address Cockerham's physician-patient relationship and sociological examples of this. 1132 words with a powerpoint attached, and references.

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