Gender inequality is one of the most crucial social disparities in India. It is most visible in the field of health. Women constitute the most vulnerable group. Though women have maximal health problems, they are the last one to approach the doctor. Even after excluding reproductive conditions, women have more of health problem as compared to males. These problems may in many cases be minor from medical viewpoint but they are not so in women's daily lives. This situation was referred to by Verbrugge as "iceberg of morbidity". The invisible tip of the iceberg is male, but the bulk of it is female. Women's health in general, is also a reflection of the status accorded to them by society which varies depending on factors like literacy, SES, employment, rural-urban status, religious environment and according to .the socio-cultural context. The cultural themes prevalent in a given culture and there internalization in the psyche of women, particularly their identities to a large extent provide the context for rationalization of such discrimination.
SEX ROLE TRAITS AND PSYCHOLOGICAL WELL BEING.
VATS, Rita & GUPTA, Ashum (University of Delhi)
The implications of sex role orientation for psychological well-being of men and women are examined. Three competing models were tested: Sex role congruence model, that sex-typed traits are necessary for optimal well-being; the contemporary androgyny model, which posits that transcendence of narrow sex typing permits enhanced psychological functioning; and the empirically based masculinity supremacy model, which states that psychological health in both men and women is primarily a function of masculine, instrumental traits. Measures assessing sex role traits and psychological well-being were administered to married persons (N=200). Masculine traits had broadly positive implications for psychological well-being for men as well as for women. Feminine characteristics were not found to be related to well-being indices. No support was found for the traditional congruence model, but both the androgyny and masculinity supremacy models were supported. Traditional viewpoint was supported in part by the findings for men, in that men who were low in masculine traits reported a lowered sense of psychological well-being. In contrast, there was little evidence that women who deviate from sex role stereotypes suffer from poorer psychological well-being.
COMPARISON OF STRESS MANAGEMENT TECHNIQUES
FOR A HIGH RISK GROUP
VERMA, Bhavana*, RAO, Kiran* and KUMARAIAH,
V.** (*Escorts Heart Institute and Research Centre, New Delhi,
**National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences)
The study evaluated the outcome of Relaxation training, Cognitive appraisal with relaxation and Workshop module on stress management. The interventions were carried out in the work setting. Thirty male, middle-level executives, who volunteered to participate in the study, were sequentially allocated to the three groups. The tools included Stress Response Check-list, Subjective Well Being Inventory, Coping Check-list, Job Pressure Index, and Visual Analogue Scale. Therapy was conducted in a group format and sessions were spaced over four weeks, with a booster session at the end of six weeks and a follow up session at the end of eight weeks. Relaxation training was the most effective in reducing the somatic symptoms of stress.
ETHICS IN HEALTH PSYCHOLOGY:
VERMA S.K. (Goverment Medical College Hospital, Chandigarh)
Health is a fundamental human right. We are committed to health for all by the 2000 A.D. Rights of everyone have to be protected and everyone respected for his/her individual rights, irrespective of the factor of being able to decide and defind for themselves. A civilized society has to look after the interest of even those who cannot defend for the selves like children, aged mentally retarded and other weaker reaction of society. Sometimes views differ with regard to individual's rights, over those of the group (with regard to rights of few versus needs of many) including the family, state, country etc. The therapists dilemmas are many and quite genuine, even with regard to confidentiality versus patient's and family's right to information. Even while giving due information one has to decide what to tell, how much to tell, when to tell, whom to tell, as well as who should tell- particularly about terminal illness and traumatic events. Also, conflicts arise over what is sometimes described as "mercy killings" or "euthanasia". Ethical issues also involve evaluating doubtful or, unethical behaviours of the health professionals. Accepting a relatively flexible code of conduct and making sacrifices voluntarily by health professionals may offer some relief temporarily but may not be acceptable to all of them.
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