The Status Syndrome By Michael Marmot Essay

The Status Syndrome By Michael Marmot Essay

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Michael Marmot’s book, The Status Syndrome, addresses how an individual’s socioeconomic status contributes to their quality of healthcare and eventually their life expectancy. He states that there is a social gradient that guarantees a better health outcome for those who are wealthier in comparison to those who are not. His book also depicts the following as indicators that influence an individual’s status: income, race, and gender. Marmot’s thesis revolves around this increasing “Status Syndrome”—a condition that reflects how the unequal social gradient relates to the health disparities of individuals in countries around the world.
Marmot’s thesis is clearly stated throughout the book as he continually mentions the phenomenon known as the “Status Syndrome”. During this chapter, he states his intentions, which focus on describing what factors influence the Status Syndrome. Marmot himself is a physician who has observed this social gradient occur in real time. He became frustrated at how patients, whom previously sought treatment, would return to their difficult social problems and eventually end up seeing him again three months later for the same initial health concern. This event led him to further explore this “Status Syndrome” with the hopes of understanding what factors prevent individuals from being healthier or choosing to live healthier lifestyles (Marmot, 8).
The majority of the data used to support his thesis come from a combination of his own studies and from the Whitehall Studies. The Whitehall Studies, which comprised of two different time periods, were longitudinal studies that were conducted in the UK. The first study observed British civil servants (men only) for a period of ten years in order to observe how the...


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...on, which may guarantee health benefits, such as insurance coverage. This study specifically looked at how college students class attendance affected their health quality later on in life. What they found was that, greater attendance guaranteed greater awareness of preventative care options.
Overall, The Status Syndrome gave me more insight in regards to how closely linked socioeconomic status is to health. However, I would have liked to see Marmot tie the two topics, socioeconomic status and education, together to illustrate just how dependent they are on one another. In my mind, I feel that both go hand in hand. Additionally, in some ways, I believe that socioeconomic status is dependent on the level of education that is attained. Regardless, it was interesting to see this topic written from other country’s perspectives and I found this to be the most intriguing.

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