Ethnography Of Health Within Melbourne Research Paper

Type of paper: Research Paper

Topic: Health, City, Drugs, Management, Society, Culture, People, Business

Pages: 6

Words: 1650

Published: 2020/11/24


Melbourne stands as a cultural centre within the state of Victoria while serving as its capital city. This city bears a population of about four million sharing various cultures that make the city the second most populous city within Australia. This goes to show that maintaining this culture has been a result of vigorous management of the city. The city prides itself in having 30 public hospitals within it and numerous health service organizations. These serve to keep the city and its inhabitants in proper shape as they perform their day-to-day activities. Urbanization comes with numerous aspects that aim to thwart the culture of an area. The maintenance of this environment in such a way that life can continue normally within this city is significantly dependent on the health care and management.

Data Collection Methods

Analyzing recordings and documents within the Health Services Branch at Council House, 200 Little Collins Street, Melbourne VIC 300, gave a significant amount of information in regards to the extent of health management within Melbourne. Furthermore, health officials within the Health Services Branch were also interviewed. Questionnaires were handed to 100 residents of the city to get insight of the people about how they view health management.
The location of research was wide but most of the information was within the Health Services Branch and a maternal healthcare clinic called North Melbourne Maternal and Child Care Centre at 49-53 Buncle Street, North Melbourne. Furthermore, the Alcoholic Anonymous City Contact Center is within the area of the Health Services Branch at the basement of 15 Mckillop Street, Melbourne.
Health issues within Melbourne are centralized within the Health Services Branch. From policies enacted by government, medical boards and their own recommendations, they ensure that the guidelines for health management are met. Investigation into health management involved the analysis of the roles and rules within the Health Services Branch as well as asking people around the city. The Health Services Branch is located along Little Collins Street. This organization has numerous departments that manage different aspects of health within the society. Interviews and secondary data sources within this location gave significant amounts of data as to what extent the Melbourne society managed health. The North Melbourne Maternal and Child Care Center at 49-53 Buncle Street, North Melbourne had numerous people to answer the questionnaires that had numerous questions. The questionnaire had open-ended questions to give the participants the freedom to express their opinion. This enables me as a researcher to have an extensive insight to their opinions rather than confining them with my ignorance of their society. Patients and health personnel both participated within the study.
The Alcoholics Anonymous institution offered a look into the city’s management of alcohol and drug abuse and misuse. This location was packed with patients undergoing therapy as well as vigorous personnel. I observed the activities within the institution with permission from the director. This place also bore statistics on the epidemiology of drug abuse and other health-dwarfing habits such as eating, work or social behaviours. These locations gave enough information to create an ethnographic report on the significance of health to the residents of Melbourne City. Having the opinions of the people, backed up by secondary sources within the locations and finally my observation of operations within the institutions provided enough data to compile an ethnographic report.

Health and Culture of Melbourne City

Health is recognized by the UN and WHO as a basic human right. Melbourne as a city is an urban area with minimal aspects of the traditional culture of the city. Health issues surround every aspect of life within the city be it food, entertainment (noise and drug use), settlement and even work. The city requires a constant appraisal of its society to ensure all aspects of health are being considered. Therefore, this look into the status of health management will give an insight to other daily activities of the people of Melbourne. Cultural activities within an area come with health implications, and thus the formulation of regulatory policies. Knowing this, this research worked in retrograde fashion from the policies that have been formulated as well as the activities going on within health facilities to deduce the cultural trends within Melbourne. This makes health a relevant basis to create an ethnographic background of the people of Melbourne. The source or causes of the health problems or policies are the cultural activities that Melbourne can be noted for within a scale of culture. Furthermore, the stipulations set by health policies are the current cultural practices of the society in real-time. This gives a retrospective view of cultural activities from the present (Ladner 172).

Significance of Health Management to Melbourne City

The Health Services Branch is primarily involved with the identification and monitoring of public health issues. The Food Act 1984 and Public Health and Wellbeing Act 2008 are applied when inspecting businesses. This board is involved in management of food businesses and handling food-related complaints. Odor and noise management within the city are also handled within this department. This body is also involved in the research and implementation of health promotion strategies and programs. The various roles of this body show that health issues have been disseminated to handle all sectors of society that require supervision. The Health Services Branch has numerous departments that are involved in solving real-time problems to prevent a catastrophe within the public health department. Among these, are the food policies that show give a look into the agricultural sector of Melbourne and the types of food produced for consumption within the society? Therefore, the health management policies have a direct influence on the dietary aspect of culture. The Southbank Farmer’s Market gives people access to the freshest food produce every first Saturday of the month from 8am to 1pm. Most people within the city have their own kitchen gardens following the Town Hall Veggie Patch and Grow Show Melbourne programs to encourage the same. Melbourne is known for its high quality of food as the policies are stringent enough to ensure that healthy food makes it to the table.
Furthermore, the visiting the Alcoholic Anonymous City Contact Center gave an insight in to the use of drugs within the city. The Strategy for a Safer City 2011-2013 showed that drug and alcohol misuse lead to risky behavior of people within the city. Within the city, as report on trends of illicit drug use within the center revealed, had 4 out of every five drug users preferring heroin as their drug of choice. Injected-Drug use is rampant and thus there are numerous structures in place to control the use and disposal of syringes to avoid the spread of infections, mostly HIV/AIDS. 88% of injected-drug users (IDUs) had used amphetamines. Cocaine use is low within this society due to its relatively higher price within the streets. Cannabis is the most abused drug within this society its use is stable and keeps increasing. However, the society has numerous centers for control of drug use to prevent the sale of these illicit drugs and provision of therapeutic services to treat drug addicts. The health department is thus directly involved in the control of drug use. The society is looking to eliminate drug misuse and abuse, and thus the health sector is researching into ways of ensuring that people do not use these drugs by education or preventing access to these drugs in conjunction with the police (de Graaf and Bruno).
The North Melbourne Maternal and Child Care Center had data showing that over the years the morbidity rate of children has been increasing. The number of planned births has also exceeded the unplanned conceptions showing that contraceptive programs were taking effect. Infant mortality rates have reduced significantly over the years due to mandatory health appointment that parents are expected to meet by the health department. This gives the society a means of raising families safely without exposure to various health risks. The questionnaires revealed that 86% of the people are involved in the management of public and personal health actively. These include taking children for vaccinations, proper syringe disposal and proper diet. The residents of the city of Melbourne have realized the significance of maintaining a healthy environment, and have thus modeled their cultural activities to ensure that their health remains optimal. Safety is important in every activity; this has made health care and management is fundamental to the society of Melbourne (Mimica 184).


Drug use within Melbourne is rampant. The trends in drug use make the health department even more relevant within this society because they are needed to treat the addicts and manage the effects of these drugs on people. In association with the police, the health department are key in the control of drug use. The number of people within the Alcoholic Anonymous City Contact Center further shows that health management and care is necessary for such persons. Maternal and child care is also significant within this society. Apart from ensuring the optimal health of parents and their children, this department of health care ensures that the parents are well educated on how to go about their normal day to activities. This shows that health has a significant role on the culture of the residents of Melbourne. Therefore, health care and management is extremely vital for the culture of the society of Melbourne.

Works Cited

De Graaff, Barbara, Raimondo Bruno, and Australian Drug Trends Series No. "Findings from
the Illicit Drug Reporting System (IDRS)." (2012). Web. 21 Feb. 2015. .
Ladner, Sam. Practical Ethnography: A Guide to Doing Ethnography in the Private Sector. New
York: Left Coast Press, 2014. Print.
Mimica, Jadran. Explorations in Psychoanalytic Ethnography. New York: Berghahn Books,
2007. Print.

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