Home Institution

Johns Hopkins University

Publication Date

Spring 2010

Program Name

Brazil: Public Health, Race, and Human Rights

Abstract

Problem Statement

Homelessness is a universal problem. This population represents some of society’s most marginalized members who, paradoxically, need society’s help the most. In this study, data was collected in order to discern in which circumstances and how homeless people utilize medical care in order to better understand the concepts of self efficacy and self agency among this population.

Question and Hypothesis

In what circumstances and by what means does the adult homeless population seek medical attention?

Since the homeless population is marginalized by society, I believe that this population lacks the self efficacy and agency that is required to advocate for their own well being. Simultaneously, they also tend to lead very risky lives. Their realities include a daily struggle for survival so much so that health and the health consequences of their behaviors may be easy to overlook. Due to this reasoning, I expected to find that most homeless people only seek medical care when their health can no longer lie in the periphery and becomes too urgent to ignore.

Thesis

The hardship of street life, including but not limited to drug addiction, fear and paranoia of violence, and inconsistency of food, water and shelter, changes the individual’s perception of the concept of time with respect to the future. As a direct result, their self agency and self advocacy in relation to their health is compromised to the point that the individual is reliant on emergency medicine and specific methods that life has taught them have quick and easy outcomes.

Disciplines

Public Health | Social Welfare

 

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