Contemporary Issues In Health and Social Cares

Introduction

Contemporary issues in health and social care are referred to the current or modern issues which occupy space in the public opinions, debates, communication and views regarding health and illness. The media is seen to play an active part towards influencing the behaviour and attitudes of the public in relation to contemporary issues in health and social care. In assignment, the way information in health and social care is being disseminated is explained. The way media influences people in health and social care field is also to be discussed. Moreover, the way different perspectives of people exist for obesity is also identified and assessed. Lastly, the influence of contemporary issues on health and social care services at the local level is explained.

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Task 1

a) Explaining the way information on health and social care is informed to the public

The information regarding health and social care such as the cost of medication and care intervention, resources, standards, disability and others related to healthcare services are communicated to the people by presenting facts and data related to them through wider media channels. The media such as newspaper, websites, social media and others use quotes, attractive headlines, show coverage of health issues and others to inform about health and social care to the public. For instance, the BBC news in one of their article regarding obesity used the attractive headline “BMI and Obesity: Where are you on the UK fat scale?” to inform individuals in the UK whether their BMI rate mentions them to be obese or not so that they can take early intervention to resolve the health disorder (www.bbc.com, 2018).

The government make policies and legislation by discussing facts in the parliament regarding health and social care and the information regarding them are published in the newspaper, magazines and others. Moreover, to deliver information regarding legislation related to health and social care they also use television media and use government websites to inform in details the guidelines in the Acts (Hamad, 2016). The local council also used their personal websites where they publish the healthcare services being presently provided in the areas and they use government websites to inform about health and social care issues to the public. This is evident from the instance of local council such as Tower Hamlet who through their own website informs about health and social care services in the area (www.towerhamlets.gov.uk, 2018).

The government agencies such as NHS, Hospitals and others inform about healthcare issues to the public by publishing contents on personal and social websites and in other media. For instance, NHS published facts regarding obesity in their own website to aware public about the health issue (www.nhs.uk, 2018). Moreover, private organisations such as Cancer Research UK, British Heart Foundations and others use social media, healthcare campaigns, posters and others to informs about healthcare issues to the public. This is evident from the account where Cancer Research UK was seen to execute obesity campaign by using posters in public areas to alert people regarding the health and social care issue (www.contemporaryhealth.co.uk, 2018). Further, the pharmaceutical companies and suppliers are seen to use advertisement on television to inform about any medication related to resolve health issues for the public (pharmafield.co.uk, 2017).

b) Analysing different techniques used for disseminating information related to health and social care

The various techniques used to disseminate information to health and social care to the public are as follows:

The media is referred to be an essential information source which is responsible to create and disseminate information regarding health and social care. They are seen to use techniques such as print news articles regarding updated occurrences about healthcare in newspapers, develop audio-visual documentaries regarding health and social care to be informed through television, arrange audio information regarding health services to be delivered through radio media and others for the public (Avery, 2017; Huesch et al. 2016). This technique helps to create better awareness regarding health and social care issues among the public by informing them in detail the cause, management, symptoms and treatment regarding health issues. For instance, the main newspapers in the UK such as the Daily Mail, The Guardian and others use their own social websites as well as print media to disseminate information regarding health and social care to the public (www.dailymail.co.uk, 2018).

The information leaflets are referred as the information sheet that is distributed freely (Sanders et al. 2016). They are usually printed by different non-profitable organisation and government agencies such as British Nutrition Foundation, NHS England, Food Standards Agency and others to disseminate information about health issues and services to the public to create awareness about health. For instance, the British Society of Urogynaecology published a patient information leaflet regarding obesity and its impact on the pelvic floor and surgery risk to disseminate information about the risk of treatment they are going to receive (bsug.org.uk,2017).

The visual images are seen to have greater impact on the minds of the public to boost their engagement to get aware about information delivered to them (Boyd et al. 2015). Thus, the technique of visual images are used by the television media, print media (newspaper, article, etc), social network (facebook, twitter, etc)and others to deliver effective information regarding health and social care to the public. For example, the “Helping overcome obesity problems” Facebook page uses various images to alert individuals regarding the way they can lower prevalence of obesity (www.facebook.com, 2018).

The audio-visual mode is also used by the television media along with social media to communicate information regarding health and social care to the public (Schmidt et al. 2015). For example, the BBC uses social media such as Youtube as well as television to aware people regarding obesity and crisis related to obesity being faced in the UK through audio-visual mode (www.youtube.com, 2013). Further, word of mouth is being used to disseminate information regarding health and social care to the public. This is executed when persons in public and social care workers in the society delivers information regarding health issues through talking with others in the public (Fortenberry Jr and McGoldrick, 2016). The radio uses audio mode to disseminate information regarding health issues to the public where through their channel the radio jockeys inform through audio various facts about health issues and ways to cope with them (Yuehong et al. 2016). For example, the BBC radio has developed a program for awareness regarding obesity among people (www.bbc.co.uk, 2018).

c) Evaluating different ways information related to health and social care influence attitudes, behaviour and vibes of people

The health and social care information leads individuals to change their perception, attitudes, behaviour and vibes as they become aware regarding new facts related to health issues. The children are seen to have the attitude to have increased amount of fast food as they are tasty in nature than the vegetables which have resulted them to prefer fast food over nutritious food, in turn, causing wider health issues among them. However, with secondary-based food information, the children are able to change their habits to take vegetables and avoid fast food for improving their health. This is evident from the study of Gunn (2018) where the children are seen to show preference over eating vegetables when they are provided sensory-based food education.

The young people in the UK are seen previously to have the attitude to smoke to look cool or get out of depression and others. However, with increased awareness regarding smoking, the UK youths are seen to have developed the behaviour to avoid smoking. This is evident from the instance when the youth called model Kylie Jenner as bad role model when she posted a picture of her smoking (www.bbc.com, 2017). The adults in the UK who are in their 30s to 40s are seen previously to have lack of knowledge regarding when to stop drinking so that their health does not deteriorates and they do not become addicted to alcohol. This results them to be involved in increased alcohol abuse (www.telegraph.co.uk, 2007). However, with education and awareness, more adults within the age of 25 years are already avoiding drinking habits to develop healthy behaviour to live efficiently (www.bbc.com, 2018).

The information and awareness regarding mental health and disability have resulted disabled and mentally ill people to have more acceptance in the society as well as has led to reduce abuses towards them (Dunn, 2016). This is because the awareness led to avoid influence of negative stigma regarding the diseases. It has also resulted the disabled and mentally ill people to be show positive urge to get early medical intervention in the society by exposing information regarding their health issues without fear.

Task 2

a) Explaining the way information on media influences attitudes and behaviour of people in health and social care service issues

The access to information on different media regarding health and social care issues helps to influence attitudes and behaviour of the people both at the local and national level (MacLean et al. 2015). The changes in healthcare policies and legislation are informed by the media to educate public regarding the change in legal and policy guidelines to be followed to ensure ethical practices and lawful behaviour in the society. This compels people to change their attitudes and behaviour regarding health and social service issues so that they do not face negative actions from the law. For instance, the new changes in the Mental Health Act 1983 informs that the mentally-ill people are given the approval to use police station as a safe place to protect themselves to avoid any danger or harm or abuse towards them (assets.publishing.service.gov.uk, 2017). This information leads the mentally-ill people to develop the attitude and behaviour that they can seek help from the police station to protect themselves from harm and the police cannot deny them assistance.

The information about epidemics and health issues provided by the media leads people to become aware of their health prior to the disease and they avail vaccination and develop better healthy activities to protect themselves from health issues (Wilder-Smith et al. 2017). This is evident due to alarming number of people being affected by swine flu in recent cases more people are seen to be concerned in taking vaccination to protect them from swine flu to avoid getting infected by the disease (www.nhs.uk, 2018). The increased information about bad effects of fast foods has resulted parents of the children and adults to develop changed attitudes to avoid eating fast foods and deem them as evil for obesity. This is evident from the study where 85% of the parent in the North West area of the UK are reported to inform that they feel fast food advertisement are key evil in making their children eat it and become obese (www.foodactive.org.uk, 2018).

The health promotions campaigns on the media are seen to lead individuals develop positive health behaviour in the society to avoid health and social care issues. This is evident as health promotion regarding smoking has considerably reduced number of people being involved in smoking due to their increased knowledge regarding way smoking hinders their health (Golechha, M., 2016; www.bbc.com, 2017). Moreover, information about new drugs and medical intervention in media leads individuals and health practitioners to use better methods to help individuals suffering from health issues to have early recovery with ease (Howard et al. 2015). The increases information dissemination by the media regarding free health check-up leads poor individuals in society to have better health condition. This is because it leads them to avoid being bothered by money spent on healthcare intervention and they develop attitudes and behaviour to avail healthcare at the early stage through these services for better health outcome.

b) Evaluating the way public can be able to assess the reliability and viability of information in health and social care

The reliability refers to the trustworthy quality of the information and validity refers to the logical and factual quality of the study (Csipke et al. 2016). As commented by Rubin and Babbie (2016), reliability and validity of the media information regarding health and social care can be ensured by the public by identifying whether the source of the media has positive reputation and shows positive integrity in disseminating information. This is because the positive reputation and integrity of the source of media are influenced by their right quality and history of information dissemination in the past. For example, television media sources such as BBC UK and Channel 4 are seen to show positive reputation and integrity in publishing news regarding various aspects such as healthcare which has result them to be deemed as most reliable media source within UK (www.theguardian.com, 2015). As stated by Chan and Holosko (2016), reliability and validity of the media information can be assured by the public by identifying the track record and experience record of the media source. This is because the media sources which provide good and authentic information are reliable in nature than the unknown and new sources. For example, the Guardian newspaper in the UK is seen to provide most authenticated information by presenting facts without any biases which have resulted it to become most trusted newspaper source in the UK (www.theguardian.com, 2018). Moreover, the public may ensure that the media information is reliable and valid if the source of media delivers information without biases and informs with proof from where they have received the facts presented in the information (Garg et al. 2015). The UK government websites and NHS websites are deemed to be reliable and valid as they are operated by the government who provides true information as they have the key to offer best services to the public for improved outcome within the country (www.gov.uk, 2018). As argued by Cowlishaw and Kessler (2016), some media sources create news regarding health and social care issues with the intention to increase the views on their channel. These media are unreliable and invalid as they provide wrong or exaggerated information to get increases views. Thus, to ensure validity and reliability in such cases the public require taking time to evaluate the aim, vision and track record of the sources.

Reliability and validity of media sources

Task 3

a) Carrying out research of different perspectives of people on obesity and reporting findings

In the given scenario, it is being reported that obese people require paying extra for taking more space for travelling in public transport as they are obese due to their own fault. The contemporary views regarding obesity by the healthcare professionals inform that adults are more obese as they avoid executing physical activity and thus they are to pay for their healthcare services (Brown et al. 2016). However, the adults inform that their professional life leaves no time for them to execute physical activity to avoid obesity and thus they are not solely responsible for paying obesity care services (www.independent.co.uk, 2018). The parents of the children perceive that the fast food advertisement is the main evil that is responsible for making their children obese by eating fast food and avoiding healthy eating (www.foodactive.org.uk, 2018). Thus, the obesity healthcare services are not the sole responsibility of the parents to be availed for caring of their children. However, the health professional with contemporary thinking believes that the parents are irresponsible and feeds the children fast food making it the parent’s responsibility for raising obese children and pay for care services (Ek et al. 2016). The other contemporary views regarding obesity informs that obese people are not solely responsible for their health issue as taking certain medication may be reason behind their obese state (Lee and Dixon, 2017). Further, few others report that their obese state is due to genetic conditions as they are responsible for causing obesity to them (Burgio et al. 2015). Moreover, according to my opinion, I think it is not valid as the obese people are not always responsible for their obesity. This is because I think circumstances may be such that they are unable to get healthy foods and since fast foods are cheap thus they avail them which lead to their obese state for which they cannot be solely blamed. Thus, I think it is not the sole responsibility of the obese patient to bear all the expenses of healthcare as circumstances, medical conditions, as well as lack of education regarding obesity, are also reason behind people becoming obese.

b) Health Issue- Obesity

i) Monitoring different perspectives that have changed with time

The monitoring of different perspective informs that the perception of cause regarding obesity and its acceptance in the society has changed over time. As mentioned by Ng et al. (2014), previously people who are overweight or obese avoid visiting the physicians as they feel fear of getting abused and harmed by the people in the society due to prevailing stigma regarding obesity. This led many individuals to suffer negative consequences of their health as a result of lack of healthcare intervention for obesity. However, as result of the assistance from the government and increased awareness for resolving stigma regarding obesity it has lead people to become more concerned about their obese state and visit the physicians to get medical assistance (Chang et al. 2016).

Earlier people do not have effective education regarding obesity which led them to fail to identify obesity as a disease. They felt that being overweight is normal and do not require medical intervention. However, present information has mentioned that the BMI rates of the individuals are to be assessed for identifying if they are obese or not (Sugovic et al. 2016). This has led people to understand that obesity is major health condition which requires effective medical intervention to resolve the health issue.

The intake of fatty food is previously considered normal by the individuals as they felt they have no bad effects on their health. However, with time people have understood the bad impact of fatty foods and this has led them to develop perception to avoid them to prevent themselves from getting obese (Bischoff et al. 2017). Moreover, with time it is identified that apart from food and lack of physical activity various genetic condition and medical intervention gives rise to obesity (Kleinendorst et al. 2018).

The individuals previously thought that stigmatization of obese people being fat and unhealthy is good. This is because it is going to motivate them to become concerned regarding their health issues and adopt healthy behaviour to resolve the disorder with own initiative (Puhl and Heuer, 2010). However, the perception has changed previously as health professionals inform that fat-shaming obese people do not motivate them to avail healthy behaviour. This is because the fat shaming stigmatisation often leads the obese individuals to either ignore negative comments or avoid taking food entirely which creates a negative impact on their health and lifestyle (www.telegraph.co.uk, 2018).

Previously it is mentioned that lack of exercise and physical activity among the UK population are leading them to get obese. This is because they are unable to burn the extra fat in the body as a result of their inactivity making them to gain weight and being obese (www.bbc.com, 2015). However, with increased researches the perspective regarding the cause of obesity is different. The report shows perception that obesity is mainly due to the intake of unhealthy and fatty foods accompanied by lack of physical exercise. This is because the foods are leading to store unsaturated fats in the body which the individuals cannot minimise leading them to increase weight and experience being obese (www.bbc.com, 2017).

ii) Analysing factors which has contributed to the change

The factors which have contributed to the change in perception over the years for obesity include:

Social factor: The socialisation of people has helped them to get educated regarding the way their inappropriate eating habits and lacks exercise, as well as other health condition, are contributing them to face obesity (Parsons et al. 2015). Thus, it has led people to become concerned regarding their eating habits to ensure they remain in good health to avoid obesity.

Educational factor: The increased health promotion campaign to create awareness regarding obesity has helped to create change in perception regarding the disease. This is because with education and awareness people have able to resolve stigma regarding obesity which has helped people with obesity to come forward for getting health services without fear if getting abused or harmed (Barcellos et al. 2018, Dietz et al. 2015).

The increased health education regarding obesity has helped individuals in society to understand that fat shaming is not going to be able to develop awareness regarding obesity and instead, it would lead to worsen the situation. This has led people to avoid such stigma and negative perception regarding obesity (www.telegraph.co.uk, 2018).

The increased health education through media, word-of-mouth, research publication and others has led individuals to understand and identify that ways obesity can be avoided. It has led the people to develop perception and attitude to avoid fast food and increase physical activity. This is because they have understood through health education that these are the ways in which obesity can be prevented (Levit et al. 2015).

Cultural factors: The foods are seen to vary among different cultures. For instance, in Western Culture such as in Britain and America people are more attracted to get involved in eating junk goods and sugary products. However, in Asian Culture, the intake of healthy food such as vegetables and others are supported to be taken (Sanchez-Johnsen et al. 2017). The awareness regarding obesity has led the people in western culture to avoid eating such fatty food and have oriented them to take health food inspired by Asian culture. Thus, it has resulted in change in perception regarding food choices within cultures for controlling obesity.

iii) Assessing the way changes have impacted people in the local area

The changes in perception regarding obesity have resulted people in the local area to become aware of their health which has made obesity figures to get low in the areas. This is evident as in the Tower Hamlets there are only 47.2% of people who are obese as reported in 2014 compared to 57.3% obesity rate in the London. Moreover, in the year it was termed to be second local area after Kingston and Chelsea in London who have reported the lowest level of obesity rate than others (www.eastlondonadvertiser.co.uk, 2014). This informs that changes in perception have lead people in the local area to be more concerned about their health to avoid being obese as seen from the statistics compared to other areas and at national level. However, the local council still perceives the rate to be high and are accordingly taking initiatives to reduce the prevalence of obesity in the area. Thus, this means that the changes in perception regarding obesity have also led the councils in the local areas to remain concerned until they reach to eradicate obesity entirely from the area.

The Sunderland region in the UK is seen to show one of the highest incidences of obesity. This is evident as it is reported that 63 people in the area are obese out of 100,000 individuals that is triple the national average (www.chroniclelive.co.uk, 2018). This informs that the changes in perception regarding obesity have not created much change in the health attitudes and behaviour to avoid obesity among the people. It may be because of inappropriate health promotion in the area by the government.

The NHS informs that London has the one of the lowest levels of obesity rate. This is evident as only 38.5% people in the area are obese which is fifth of the total people being assessed to be obese within the UK (www.telegraph.co.uk, 2017). Thus, this informs that the changes in perception regarding obesity have resulted people in the area to be effectively aware regarding the activities to be taken to avoid obesity. Moreover, the changes in perception may have also led to avoid influence of religious beliefs that drives people towards obesity to be avoided that has resulted lower obesity rate in the area.

In between 2013-2016, it is mentioned that Rotherham in England has the highest rate of obesity with 32.6% being obese and 43.5% being overweight (www.telegraph.co.uk, 2017). This informs that the changes in perception regarding obesity have not effectively implemented by the public in this area. Thus, the people in the area are more obese and are facing increased incidences of being overweight.

The boroughs of Kensington, Camden and Chelsea are seen to have the smallest number of people who are overweight or obese in the country (www.telegraph.co.uk, 2017). This fact informs that the changes in perception regarding obesity are well-accepted in the areas as a result of which more people are concerned to adopt healthy activities to avoid being obese.

Task 4

a) Extent to which the local attitudes are reflected those found in the national level

The way people have attitude and concepts regarding health issues at the local level are different from those found at the national level as the views vary from local areas to nationally perceived concept. In Tower Hamlets, the local attitudes regarding obesity are at a more concerned and successful level in comparison to the national level. This is evident from the figures which inform that in 2014 the area has only 47.2% of obese people compared to 57.3% in London (www.eastlondonadvertiser.co.uk, 2014). Thus, the attitudes regarding obesity are seen to be more advanced at the local level in the mentioned area in comparison to the national level. It is evident as better awareness about obesity in the local area has led people to develop attitudes and actions to involve in physical activity and avoid fatty food to be healthy in nature so that their weight can be controlled. Moreover, better health and social activities are being provided as a result of which the obesity is rate is being remained at such a lower rate in the local area in comparison to the rate at the national level.

b) Validity of public attitudes and behaviour regarding the issue

The validity of the public behaviour and attitude regarding obesity in the area has a great influence in managing the prevalence of the illness. This is because developing a positive attitude to cope a health issue such as obesity on their will helps to create less incidence and prevalence of the disorder in the area. It is evident as the concerning attitude leads the individuals in the local area to develop a healthy lifestyle with their personal initiative (Díez et al. 2017). Moreover, positive behaviour regarding a health issue by the public in the local area reduces the total cost of obesity management as the council has to manage fewer individuals suffering from the health issues (Li et al. 2016). As commented by Foster et al. (2015), obese people are often abused for their weight and made fun in society. This leads individuals suffering from the disorder to develop restraint to expose themselves in the society to receive healthcare leading to worst health condition regarding the health issue in the area. As argued by Roberto et al. (2015), negative attitude of people regarding a health issue leads individuals suffering from health disorder to face isolation from society. This leads the individuals to get deprived of accessing proper healthcare to resolve their disorder as due to isolation they are not properly informed of the healthcare services they are able to access. Therefore, such negative attitudes regarding obesity in case have been faced in Tower Hamlets it would have led to worsen the situation and incidence of the disorder.

c) Implication of possible consequences of contemporary perspective on health and social care

The contemporary perspective regarding obesity is going to help in increasing engagement of the people to involve in healthy activities. This would help to reduce the incidences of obesity as the causes and risks for occurrence of the disorder would be effectively managed (Di Meo et al. 2017). The contemporary thinking regarding obesity also helps to create early intervention for the individuals suffering from the disorder. This is because the individuals suffering from obesity has clear perception when to contact the physician so that it can be resolved at the early stage (Lustig et al. 2016). Further, contemporary thinking regarding obesity is also going to help to restrict barriers related to social and cultural factors that otherwise avoid individuals suffering from the disorder to face hindrance in accessing the healthcare related to the disorder.

Conclusion

The above discussion disseminate that information in health and social care is communicated to the public by using different media, attractive headlines, healthcare campaigns, posters and others by government institutions, newspapers, private healthcare services. The techniques such as print, text, messages, visual images, leaflets and others used to disseminate the information. The secondary-based health education, updated information, positive data to reduce stigma regarding disease and others acts to influence the attitudes and behaviour of the people. The validity and reliability of the sources can be identified by keeping track record, analysing the reputation and others of the media sources. In Tower Hamlets, Camden, London, Kingston and other local areas, it is seen that the change in perception regarding obesity has led them to have reduced prevalence of obesity. The contemporary thinking regarding obesity is required so that early intervention, reduced healthcare cost, improved lifestyle of individuals and others of the public can be boosted.

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