Soci320 13b | Sociology homework help


As promised, this week we will investigate other health professionals. Here is a partial list of medical care practitioners; this is not exhaustive!

physiciansdentistspharmacistsphysician assistantsnursesadvanced practice registered nursessurgeonssurgeon’s assistantathletic trainerssurgical technologistmidwivesdietitianstherapistspsychologistschiropractorsclinical officerssocial workersphlebotomistsoccupational therapistphysical therapistsradiographerrespiratory therapistsaudiologistsspeech pathologistsoptometristsemergency medical techniciansparamedicsmedical laboratory scientists, and medical prosthetic technicians

But being a practitioner does not make you a professional. Nurses have had a rough time delineating their work as a profession.  

For our purposes, a profession has three characteristics:

Autonomy to set educational and licensing standards

Technical, specialized knowledge

Public confidence in practitioners ethics (Parsons,1951) [and yes, this is the same Parsons of ‘sick role’ fame]

Investigate any means that medical care is practiced (see the list above). How does this method of medical care ‘stack up’ to the three characteristics of a profession. When is it not just a job? Just an occupation?  Convince your group that this medical practice IS or IS NOT a profession.  

Did your other students find what you found? Do you agree or disagree? If someone investigates nursing, then by all means, discuss why this has been SUCH a difficult issue for them (critical sociology will remind you to look at who has power, who wants the power, who doesn’t want to lose power, etc.).

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