SOC244 Sociology of Health Care Syllabus

University of Toronto, Fall 2016


About This Course

This course is a 200 level course, so it is an introductory and survey level course to the complex issues in the sociology of health care and health care systems analysis. It terms of content, the course is divided into four main thematic areas: Social and historical forces, populations and social determinants of health, and the body, technology and ethical-moral debates. The first thematic area, Social and Historical Forces, presents us with the challenges of historical analyses and the theories and ideologies that influence the organizational structure of health care systems in selected Western countries, including Canada. The historical segment of the course focuses on how health systems develop, how they are maintained, and how they can change over time. The second thematic area explores social forces that determine people’s health outcomes such as social class, race/ethnicity, and gender and sexuality. The third area explores explores issues around the body in health care, the illness experience and the challenges that current medical technologies pose to enduring moral questions about human life. These topics will be explored in detail in specific lectures. However, every lecture will be imbued with conversations that link more than one theme at the time.