Four years after it was first published, a second edition of the book Staying Alive: Critical Perspectives on Health, Illness, and Health Care has just been published, providing a fresh perspective on health, health care and illness.
Co-edited by York School of Health Policy & Management Professors Dennis Raphael and Marcia Rioux, along with University of Toronto health studies Professor Toba Bryant, the second edition of Staying Alive (Canadian Scholars’ Press Inc.) has been thoroughly updated.
It features a new chapter on research methodology; expanded discussions of inequality, women’s health, public health and public policy; more material on First Nations health; and a new discussion of the historical development of the Canadian medicare system.
The first edition sold really well and there isn’t another source out there that covers the same material in one book, says Rioux. A second edition was needed.
The collection also includes chapters on pharmaceutical policy, social class, race, gender and care, as well as the social construction of illness and disability. In addition, it looks at approaches to promoting population health that include insights into the impact of economic forces such as globalization and privatization.
Left: Dennis Raphael
“Concerns about health and the health-care system have reached a fever pitch in Canada in recent years,” write the editors. “The public is subjected to a daily onslaught of media stories about the causes and treatment of disease and the threats to the sustainability of the Canadian health-care system.”
The book strives to bring together isolated yet important perspectives in identifying key issues in health, illness and health care, relating them to current policy environments as a means of identifying the complex origins of the problems identified and contributing in a meaningful way to their solution.
It focuses on the Canadian scene with relevant comparisons to the United States and other countries and is organized in four parts. The first part provides an overview and critical review of four major health paradigms – the epidemiological, sociological, political economy and human rights perspectives – and a new chapter on research paradigms and methodologies.
Right: Toba Bryant
The second part explores the emerging field of the social determinants of health with a focus on social class, gender and race as indicators of differential access to the economic and social resources available within a society.
In the third part, a comparative history of the Canadian health-care system is provided, along with an overview of current attempts at reform and a detailed analysis of the effects upon the system and its participants of recent trends toward privatization.
Left: Marcia Rioux
The final part considers critical issues in health and health care that illustrate some of the key themes of the volume, including gender and its interaction with health and health care; the construction of illness and disability; health policy through the lens of pharmaceutical policy and the health-care system; and public health concerns of varying national jurisdictions.
Staying Alive is expected to be of interest to a wide range of readers in the fields of health studies, nursing and social policy. In addition to traditional health sciences and sociological approaches, the book provides human rights and political economy perspectives on health, focusing on Canada and the United States within an international context.
For more information, visit the Canadian Scholars’ Press Inc. Web site.