This course has opened my eyes to just how important and functional the field of medical anthropology is. I previously was most intrigued by the field of archaeology but have slowly switched my focus over to this subject. There are currently an abundance of medical jobs in the United States which definitely has an influence on its attractiveness. Also the advancement in technology is soaring right now, making western medicine even more dependable and efficient. On the other hand, our country has admitted that the healthcare system we currently have is not so good at all. Even countries rated below us in terms of wealth, technology, etc., have longer average life spans. The reason for this may be the existence of universal healthcare systems, in which no citizen has to worry about not having access to sufficient health services.
After watching a video on the subject of healthcare systems earlier in the semester, I have drawn up a little dream scenario in my head. I wish I could come up with a solution to our country’s problem. It isn’t fair that a portion of our population is denied healthcare due to poverty, lack of insurance, and other hardships. And it isn’t just poor families suffering. I have friends who don’t have insurance because their parents’ plans have dropped them and they are unable to work a job that provides benefits or can’t afford to pay for another type of insurance and don’t qualify for governmental assistance.
In order to come up with a new medical situation for this country, I think that well-educated and passionate anthropologists are a vital part of the research team. They bring a culture-analyzing view. As professionals, they are able to take on an objective perspective, pointing out the important qualities of our culture that would affect a proposed system. Coming up with a new healthcare system isn’t just about developing one that seems good but shaping it so that it fits into our lives easily and naturally, ensuring its success. We may need economists, politicians, doctors, and other professionals to create a system but the anthropologists would be able to predict its success rate before it is even put into action.