The Human Condition takes a comprehensive view of health care, focusing on nine topic areas: The Fabric of Health, Who is at Risk?, The life Cycle, Emotional and Mental Health, Sexual Health, Health and Chemical Substances, Health Risks: The Role of Heredity and Lifestyle, Promoting Well-Being Through Fitness and Nutrition, and The Individual in the Health/Medical Marketplace. These 26 video episodes combine interviews with leading health professionals, dynamic location footage, and illustrative case studies, to bring each lesson to life.
Topics Covered in The Human Condition:
1. The Fabric of Health defines health in the broadest terms - including mental, physical and nutritional well-being , and the relationship between leading an active productive life and overall health. Analyzes the relationship between economic security and health, and between the health of a community's citizens and its productivity.
2. In Human Terms demonstrates how health care professionals in the United States and abroad overcome legal, political and bureaucratic obstacles in providing health care to people for whom it is unavailable.
3. State of Mind discusses the epidemiology of mental disorders and explains the more promising treatment approaches now emerging to help individuals enhance their psychological health. Follows the cases of a woman who suffers from depression, and a bulimic, with insights from the experts who are playing a role in their treatment and recovery.
4. Lives in Balance analyzes stress reduction as a means of improving individual health, and explores a variety of stress reduction approaches that can help people control their emotional and physical responses to the stress of daily living. Documents the experiences of two city council members taken hostage by an irate constituent, and the steps they took to survive not only the ordeal, but also the aftermath.
5. Behind Closed Doors looks at the increasing incidence of violent and abusive behavior in society, and explores the underlying factors in domestic violence, child abuse, and assault, seen through the eyes of both victims and experts. Explores a program in Georgia called SIMBA, a violence prevention course for incarcerated youth.
6. It's Personal examines the development of sexual behavior in today's society, and how our ideals and identities have changed. Follows two couples: a lesbian couple who have been living together for twenty years, and a heterosexual couple in the first stages of their relationship.
7. Risky Business looks at the commonness of unexpected pregnancy, talking with the unwed mothers and mothers-to-be of Project Cradle. Also explores the dangers of sexually transmitted disease (or STDs).
8. The Code examines DNA and its role as the "blueprint" for each human being's general health, longevity, and physical appearance. Confronts the tough questions about genetic testing and intervention through the story of a mother whose son suffers from a genetic family defect, and the doctor whose research and support is helping them.
9. Haley or Matthew's Story shows the link between healthy, risk-reducing behaviors prior to pregnancy and the well-being of a newborn child. Follows an expectant mother and her husband through the last stages of pregnancy, examining the prenatal environment in which the fetus exists, the factors and conditions that affect the developmental process, and the new procedures for detecting and intervening in fetal problems.
10. The Growing Years identifies major health risks during infancy, early childhood, childhood and adolescence; and discusses preventive strategies that are proving successful in dressing the likelihood of debilitating illness or injury among children.
11. Web of Addiction depicts drug addiction as an epidemic, affecting not only the health and well-being of users and their families, but also the society at large. Examines Outreach, Inc, in Atlanta, Georgia, and the efforts of former addicts turned counselors to help other addicts deal with the pain of their physiological, psychological, economic, and social bondage.
12. Feels So Good...Hurts So Bad looks at how the use of alcohol and tobacco relates to disease, disability, and death. A recovering alcoholic and various experts in the field examine the potential damage these products have not only on the user, but also on his or her family and friends. Identities key treatments for those addicted to alcohol and tobacco, and offers behavioral strategies to help users avoid relapsing.
13. What You Don't Know identifies the linkages between environmental pollution and illnesses in communities, and discusses the impact of pollution on quality of life through a series of case studies. Identifies the in-home and workplace risks associated with chemical usage, discusses OSHA's role in work place protection, and offers ideas for ensuring the safe use of chemicals in the home.
14. Food For Thought measures the health cost of nutritional illiteracy by looking at the critical elements of good nutrition, factors that influence eating habits, and the impact that being well-informed can have on individual nutritional decisions.
15. Weighing In explains how poor food choices and an increasingly sedentary lifestyle combine to contribute to a dramatic increase in obesity in America. Identifies successful and unsuccessful weight loss approaches, following the experiences of two people who are maintaining weight loss after decades of failed attempts.
16. Working It Out explains why physical fitness and regular exercise are important for individuals of all ages. Focuses on physical activity as a valuable lifelong habit, as well as a way to teach teamwork, shared effort, and esprit de corps to children.
17. Germ Warfare examines the increasing incidence of infectious germ-borne illnesses that occur in industrialized and developing countries. Discusses how society reacts to infectious diseases, and outlines the role of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in identifying, treating, and preventing the spread of these diseases.
18. The Modern Plague recounts medical science's search for the cause of a mysterious illness that seemed to affect only gay young men in the early 1980s. Describes how the disease (acquired immune deficiency syndrome, or AIDS) and the human immunodeficiency virus that causes it were identified, as well as modes of transmission.
19. Heart of the Matter studies the risk factors for coronary heart disease, still the number one killer of men and women in the United States. The before-and after-story of a heart by-pass patient illustrates how mitigation of these risks factors decreases the likelihood of atherosclerosis and the complications of heart disease, while the experience of a female heart attack victim show the difference between symptoms in men and women.
20. Brain Attack looks at the most common sudden injury to the brain and the third leading cause of death in the United States - stroke. This episode identifies the factors that can cause strokes and the symptoms to which people need to be alerted, followed by the rehabilitation stories of two stroke victims. A pregnant woman who suffered a stroke two weeks before the bay was due, and a healthy, middle age man who suffered a cerebral hemorrhage as he got ready for work.
21. Diagnosis: Cancer deals with why patients diagnosed with cancer should no longer assume that the diagnosis is as "death sentence". Using the backdrop of two patients who are attending a support group, it explains the process by which normal cells mutate and become cancerous, as well as the impact of heredity, diet, nutrition, and exercise on the development of cancer.
22. Living With Cancer identifies the recent technological and scientific advances that have enabled ever- greater numbers of cancer patients to "beat" the disease. Hearing from cancer victims themselves, it assesses the psychological., social, and spiritual impact of cancer on the individual; the importance of family and support groups; and the impact that a battle with cancer often has on the individual's values and life priorities.
23. Age Happens focuses on the psychological and physiological aspects of aging, and how exercise, proper diet, and social interaction can help prolong life spans.
24. Final Chapter looks at the range of cultural issues and attitudes that surround death and dying. Includes a case study of a woman who has rejected her HIV medicine and is awaiting her death. Also studies the hospice movement as a source of support for dying persons and their families.
25. The Medical Marketplace takes the viewer through the choices we must make in regards to our health care, from how to pick an insurance plan that fits your need to building a relationship with your primary care physician.
26. What Price? delves into two critical issues inequalities in health care and health care delivery, and ethical considerations in allocating limited health care resources.
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