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New Left Review I/34, November-December 1965

Martin Rossdale

Health in a Sick Society

When we talk about health in society today, we consider its death-rate or the life-span of its members. When we talk about the provision of health we talk about it as a social service—something which can be added to a community if there are sufficient facilities, hospitals, drugs, scalpels and men to wield them. At one moment we think of ourselves as healthy, able to work, to meet our commitments and carry out our responsibilities, to escape work and enjoy our leisure; at the next moment we are sick. Like a dirty pound note, we are taken out of circulation. We are sent to bed or to hospital, for between health and disease there is nothing.

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Martin Rossdale, ‘Health in a Sick Society’, NLR I/34: £3

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