Human Evolution

Human Evolution

Question 1

Fossils records enable us to see events that happened in the past. As such, humans can know the modern evolution using events that happened in the past through fossils. Documented fossils history shows characteristics such as path the creatures took through evolutionary history. In addition, fossils show the time taken for a complete revolution to occur (Grabowski et.al, 2015). As such, humans can date them as well as looking into their features that occurred during their development period and helps in comparing them. Therefore, fossils enable us to know human evolution (Cartmill & Smith, 2009).

 

Question 2

Different scholars have come up with several explanations to illustrate bipedalism including the idea of our ancestors’ desire to stand up and see beyond the tall grasses, reduce the body area exposed to sunlight among others. However, bipedalism enables human to understand the origin of their most distinctive traits (Langdon, 1985). In addition, scientists postulate that understanding our ancestors’ brain enables us to fully understand how modern humans evolved. Notably, the modern human’s brains are globular and large. The modern human behavior can be attributed to induced neurological shifts from our ancestors. According to scientists, the human brain possesses abstract thought that enables humans to create art and tools and is traceable from the emergence of human revolution (Grabowski et.al, 2015).

 

Question 3

The out of Africa theory explains that modern humans came from an isolated species that expanded to replace the out-of-date and indigenous humans. The out of Africa modern humans are believed to have risen in the Pleistocene and are considered as new species that have negligible mating between archaic groups and migrating Africans (Leakey, 2013).   While the Out of Africa hypothesis suggests that Africans are the ancestors of all living things, the multiregional hypothesis postulates that Homo erectus is ancestor of all living things after he migrated into various part of the world and evolved (Grabowski et.al, 2015).

 

Question 4

The most recent discovery was the Neanderthal; the creature was discovered in Germany, August 1856. Consequently, various scholars have argued the relationship between modern human and the Neanderthal (Dalton, 2010).  For instances, some signs show that the Neanderthal is similar to modern human but different from Homo sapiens. Consequently, the scholars argue that the Neanderthal breed with Homo sapiens, while others argue that they could not bleed because they had different characteristics (Hopkinson, 2000).

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References

Grabowski, M., Hatala, K. G., Jungers, W. L., & Richmond, B. G. (2015). Body mass estimates of hominin fossils and the evolution of human body size. Journal of Human Evolution, 85, 75-93.

Top of Form

Leakey, R. E. (2013). The origin of humankind.

Bottom of Form

Top of Form

Cartmill, M., & Smith, F. H. (2009). The human lineage. Hoboken, N.J: Wiley-Blackwell.

Bottom of Form

Langdon, J. (1985). Fossils and the origin of bipedalism. Journal Of Human Evolution14(7), 615-635. doi: 10.1016/s0047-2484(85)80071-3

Dalton, R. (2010). Neanderthals may have interbred with humans. Nature. doi: 10.1038/news.2010.194

Hopkinson, T. (2000). Neanderthals and Modern Humans. Antiquity74(285), 723-725. doi: 10.1017/s0003598x00060129

 

 

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Business Analysis: Motel 6

Business Analysis: Motel 6

The paper undertakes business analysis of Motel 6 assessing its generic business-level strategy with specifics. It also explores the firm’s competitive advantage vis-à-vis the industry and its top competitors. The sustainability of the firm’s long-term strategy is also evaluated. In addition, the position of the firm in the industry life cycle is identified. The analysis of the life cycle seeks to establish its influence on the strategies being implemented by the firm.

Business-Level Strategy

Business-level strategy “details the goal-directed actions managers take in their quest for competitive advantage when competing in a single product market” (Rothaermel, 2016, p.177). The focus is on customer segments to serve, customer needs to satisfy, and ways and means of meeting the customer needs (Rothaermel, 2016). There are generic business-level strategies that determine the market target focus (broad or narrow) and cost (Thompson et al., 2016).

Motel 6 has established itself as a low-budget hotel with no-frills lodging and roadside locations (Karmin, 2015). It offers discount motels in more than 1,300 locations with discounts such as 10% off for seniors (Motel 6, 2019). It offers discounted rates on its motel properties and inherently pursuing a low-cost provider strategy. The firm has developed an infrastructure in terms of locations that enables it to offer competitive pricing relative to most of its rivals.

It also offers similar discounts for military personnel (Motel 6, 2019). Although for the most part of its history (founded in 1962) the firm has pursued a low-cost provide strategy, it has adapted to the blue-oceans strategy. In this strategy, the firm simultaneously pursues a low-cost and differentiation strategy (Rothaermel, 2016). In 2010, the chain revamped its rooms offering additional amenities including large flat-screen TVs and granite countertops (Delollis, 2010).

The changes were made without impacting its appeal and average price at that time of $45.26 (Delollis, 2010). It became the first budget hotel chain to feature 32-inch flat-screen TVs as well as offering Wi-Fi and ports for plugging electronics (Delollis, 2010). Although the prices at the hotels did not change significantly, the product improved dramatically. It highlighted the efforts that the firm pursued to differentiate its offerings from rivals like Super 8.

Competitive Advantage

The intention of pursuing a business-level is to garner and sustain competitive advantage vis-à-vis industry rivals (Rothaermel, 2016). It has broader brand recognition that most rivals such as Super 8 and Red Roof Inns (Delollis, 2010). The greater awareness is due to efforts to make the product more appealing especially among young people while maintaining low prices. The attractiveness among different age groups is instructive (Figure 1, Appendix).

The strong appeal among the younger demographics (18 to 29 years) gives the firm a broader market than most rivals (Statista, 2019). It has more than 1,300 locations in the United States that are strategically located along roadsides (Karmin, 2015). The hotel chain is backed by a strong parent, Blackstone Group. In addition, it offers broader range of products from the basic Motel 6 to the extended stay hotel offerings under the Studio 6 brand.

Motel 6 has continues to institute changes with its products offerings that respond to the evolving customer tastes leading to retention of strong brand recognition (Delollis, 2010). The firm has comparatively high occupancy rate of more 85% relative to industry (Karmin, 2015). The high occupancy rate has been instrumental in generating adequate profitability to support product makeovers and purse its ambition to expand to new geographical markets.

Business Sustainability

The major driver of sustainability for Motel 6 is its attractiveness to younger people (Figure 1, Appendix). It offers the firm consistent customer base as they are likely to continue to patronage their establishments as they grow older. The firm has always responded to changes in consumer demands and has pioneered significant changes (Delollis, 2010). Even with the broad appeal of product innovations, it has maintained its low prices which are the main attraction.

As a result, it has been able to balance product upgrades and still maintaining the low prices profitably. The ability to profitably manage the balance is instrumental in creating the level of differentiation that promotes strong brand appeal. The hotel chain is pursuing more markets within the Americas with expansion into Panama, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Belize as part of regional diversification strategy (Karmin, 2015).

Expanding into additional country markets reduces its reliance on the United States market. Unlike the basic products offered under the Motel 6 brand, it is creating an entirely different model for Latin America. It is an expanded version with food and beverage offerings under the Hotel 6 brand. The diversification that responds to different markets and cultures has the potential for enabling them to attain success in new markets unlike standardization.

Industry Life Cycle

There are five stages in the industry life cycle including embryonic, growth, shakeout, mature, and decline (Hill & Jones, 2013). The stages are progressive with varying demand and growth rates. Motel 6 is in the industry shakeout phase where growth has slowed considerably and is approaching saturation levels especially in the home market. It posted increase of Revenue per Available Room (RevPAR) of between 1.1% and 3.6% (Lodging Staff, 2017).

The low growth rate is persistent due to the high level of saturation in the market in the United States with progressive towards market maturity. It is the main driver behind its move to expand into Central America as part of geographical diversification (Karmin, 2015). There is a high level of awareness within the firm that the sustainability of growth in the United States is fairly limited. Therefore, geographical expansion offers the requisite diversification.

Conclusion

Motel 6 has maintained its budget focus but has been modifying its product to create a stronger appeal among the younger generation. It implies that is seeking blue oceans in the increasingly saturated market in the United States. The continued expansion in the home market and internationally boosts economies and long-term sustainability. The industry is increasingly becoming mature prompting strategy shift especially geographical diversification for the firm.

References

Delollis, B. (2010). Budget Hotels Going More Upscale. Retrieved 27 March 2019 from https://abcnews.go.com/Travel/BusinessTravel/story?id=4491507&page=1

Hill, C. W. L., & Jones, G. R. (2013). Strategic Management: An Integrated Approach (10th Ed.). Mason, OH: South-Western.

Karmin, C. (2015). Low-Budget Motel 6 Gets in on Lodging Growth Boom. Retrieved 27 March from https://www.wsj.com/articles/low-budget-motel-6-gets-in-on-lodging-growth-boom-1425410488

Lodging Staff. (2017). G6 Hospitality Announces 2016 Growth. Retrieved 27 March 2019 from https://lodgingmagazine.com/g6-hospitality-announces-2016-growth/

Motel 6. (2019). Save More for What You Travel For. Retrieved 27 March 2019 from https://www.motel6.com/#/home

Rothaermel, F. T. (2016). Strategic Management (3rd Ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Education.

Statista. (2019). Share of Americans who Stayed at Motel 6 Hotels in the Last 12 Months in 2018, by Age. Retrieved 27 March 2019 from https://www.statista.com/statistics/227566/motel-6-hotel-guests-usa/

Thompson, A. A., Peteraf, M. A., Gamble, J. E., & Strickland, A. J. (2016). Crafting and Executing Strategy: The Quest for Competitive Advantage, Concepts and Cases (20th Ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill Education.

Aviation Safety

 

 

 

 

 

Aviation Maintenance Safety

Name:

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Weakest Link in Aviation Maintenance Safety

Since time immemorial, air transport been considered as the most convenient and secure means of transportation. The recent blow to the industry has been the increasing cases of plane crashes which has necessitated experts to examine the root cause of these accidents and develop effective solutions to reduce these accidents (Phillips, 2006). Aviation maintenance, safety can be defined as the process of ensuring that a system continuously performs its intended function in the level of reliability and safety (Xavier, 2015). Accordingly, International Aviation Maintenance and Safety bodies are carrying out research to find the most effective ways to prevent the planes from fatigue, wear and corrosion hence restoring the airplanes’ status.

Safety programs to mitigate this Weakness

Plans to enhance Aviation maintenance, safety have been thoroughly carried out over the years. A recent study by the flight safety foundation indicates that the human factor remains to be the weakest link in aviation safety and maintenance system. Further studies show that 85% of airline crashes are caused mainly by human error. Wikstén & Johansson (2016), gives an illustration of American Airlines Flight 587 where as a result of human error, 265 passengers succumbed to death. Some of the tendencies that prompt researchers to attribute most airplane crashes to human errors include; pilot decision making, poor “crew resource management, GPS factor, pilot area familiarity, fatigue and adverse mental states of the pilots.

Aviation Maintenance Safety Dynamics with Other Safety Programs

Currently, the aviation sector is working on safety programs to design more reliable, convenient and safer transportation systems. Fallibility, a safety program has been evaded through combining good training with modern safety equipment and onboard devices to warn of collisions with other planes or with the ground. Other safety programs include the provision of new decision aids and educational training and enhancement of existing guidance material (Rosenkrans, 2018). Moreover, air safety ought to be controlled and pilots to spend more time with the planes to learn all the controls. When systems are in place, the failure rate is low as opposed to the ability of humans to monitor the aircraft’s performances effectively. Phillips (2006), states that efforts to introduce unmanned aerial vehicles rather than piloted aircraft prove to be safer as there is an increased operator vigilance. In order to detect malfunctions more easily, perhaps robots should be put into operation. Malfunctioning of these aircraft could be overcome by employing multiple parallel monitoring systems.

How Analytical Systems and Data Collection Help Develop Safety Programs

The issue of vigilance effects when dealt with, can reduce dangers associated with aircrafts crash. Vigilance effects can be attributed to; boredom and the high workload associated with a high level of vigilance. Besides, performance deficit may occur because of either vigilance decrement over time or sustained low levels of vigilance. These levels of vigilance cause fatigue which is disastrous as it poses threats to passengers’ safety (Hinckley et al., 2010). On the other hand, analytical systems and data collections tools would play a vital role in enhancing aviation systems since they would integrate the safety processes and hence enhance speed and efficiency in gathering safety information. Moreover, the aspect of scalability is desirable as the safety operations and aviation structure expand in terms of ensuring that programs and processes are designed towards safety and maintenance. However, the initial cost of instituting analytical systems, especially the big data technology is quite high, but the benefits of its implementation and execution within the aviation safety docket would help the organization realize significant levels of safety and maintenance.

From the above arguments, it is evident that even with the introduction of aircraft, engines, navigations, and in-flight safety devices, accidents are still occurring with more plane crashing and killing many passengers. Therefore, we can conclude that human beings are the constant weak link in aviation safety.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

References

Hinckley, C. M., Hettinger, H., & Juenger, J. E. (2010). The argument for federal legislation protecting the confidentiality of aviation safety action program information. J. Air L. & Com.75, 161.

Phillips.D. (2006). Human factor remains air safety’s weakest link – Business – International Herald Tribune. New York Times.  Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2006/08/30/business/worldbusiness/30iht-transcol31.2639344.html

Rosenkrans, W. A. Y. N. E. (2018). Speaking up. Flight Safety Foundation. Aerosafety World, 34-39.

Wikstén, J., & Johansson, M. (2016). Maintenance and reliability with a focus on aircraft maintenance and spares provisioning.

Xavier, A. J. (2015). Managing human factors in aircraft maintenance through a performance excellence framework. A Graduate Research Project, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

Social Judgment Theory

Social Judgment Theory

Social judgment supposition is a self-influential premise that examines the perception and evaluates an idea through weighing it against contemporary positions. Therefore, social judgment theory is a scheme that ventures into human judgment. The premise of the theory depicts that attitude change can occur as a result of a persuasive message. The approach further examines interaction with people and how such interactions lead to a shift in perception and opinion. Aspects that are coiled in the social verdict assumption include; “scope of rejection, acceptance, and noncommitment, adjustment and disparity, ego association, attitude change, and simulations” (Kuzio, 2013). Understanding the dynamics and principles of the theory will help in indicating a situation that depicts my self-experience concerning social judgment theory.

Social judgment aids us to understand the best way to approach individuals that we intend to impact concerning a particular subject. This is because the premise of social judgment gives us an idea regarding the stance or attitude of individuals we intend to influence concerning the underlying topic (Chau, et al. 2014). Therefore, we will be in a position to infer what they are likely to accept and reject the subject matter in question. The incidence that instilled a memorable experience regarding social judgment premise is when I was discussing with my mother regarding success in life. I understand that my mother has a perception that education is the aspect that will largely contribute to success. Therefore, I had to persuade her that in-built and nurtured talent is another platform that significantly contributes to success. My mother has a good impression concerning talent; hence, she will give it a level of tolerance or acceptance as a path to success.

The anchor point in this situation is education. My mother believes that education is the most satisfying aspect when it comes to attaining success in life. I think that the fact she believes in education as the most pleasing factor in achieving success does not imply she will not accept other paths that lead to success. For instance, she had some degree of acceptance that talent is another platform that presents an opportunity for one to succeed in life. Latitude of acceptance refers to the range of ideas one is willing to accept. In the underlying situation, my mother agrees that talent is essential in elevating an individual, but she believes ones should balance between education and talent, and pursues them in a parallel manner.

The latitude of noncommitment implies a scope of thoughts where one has got no opinion regarding them. For instance, if I informed my mother that I had a talent in football and I pursue it while studying, she did not bother much even though it was not her preference. Latitude of rejection implies the idea that one is not supporting. For instance, I asked my mother if I could undertake a football professional on fulltime bases at the expense of my studies. She was quick to detest the idea has she had a notion that education is the primary aspect; other aspects concerning success should only complement education. I was keen on denoting my persuasive approach particular where my idea was within the rejection latitude of my mother, as the concept was opposing the anchor point.

References

Chau, et al. (2014). Social Judgment Theory-Based Model On Opinion Formation, Polarization, And Evolution. Retrieved from: https://arxiv.org/pdf/1308.2042.pdf

Kuzio, A. (2013). Social Judgment theory: retrieved from: http://a- kuzio.weebly.com/uploads/1/3/7/3/13730231/social_judgement_theory.pdf

Aviation Maintenance Safety

Weakest Link in Aviation Maintenance Safety

Since time immemorial, air transport been considered as the most convenient and secure means of transportation. The recent blow to the industry has been the increasing cases of plane crashes which has necessitated experts to examine the root cause of these accidents and develop effective solutions to reduce these accidents (Phillips, 2006). Aviation maintenance, safety can be defined as the process of ensuring that a system continuously performs its intended function in the level of reliability and safety (Xavier, 2015). Accordingly, International Aviation Maintenance and Safety bodies are carrying out research to find the most effective ways to prevent the planes from fatigue, wear and corrosion hence restoring the airplanes’ status.

Safety programs to mitigate this Weakness

Plans to enhance Aviation maintenance, safety have been thoroughly carried out over the years. A recent study by the flight safety foundation indicates that the human factor remains to be the weakest link in aviation safety and maintenance system. Further studies show that 85% of airline crashes are caused mainly by human error. Wikstén & Johansson (2016), gives an illustration of American Airlines Flight 587 where as a result of human error, 265 passengers succumbed to death. Some of the tendencies that prompt researchers to attribute most airplane crashes to human errors include; pilot decision making, poor “crew resource management, GPS factor, pilot area familiarity, fatigue and adverse mental states of the pilots.

Aviation Maintenance Safety Dynamics with Other Safety Programs

Currently, the aviation sector is working on safety programs to design more reliable, convenient and safer transportation systems. Fallibility, a safety program has been evaded through combining good training with modern safety equipment and onboard devices to warn of collisions with other planes or with the ground. Other safety programs include the provision of new decision aids and educational training and enhancement of existing guidance material (Rosenkrans, 2018). Moreover, air safety ought to be controlled and pilots to spend more time with the planes to learn all the controls. When systems are in place, the failure rate is low as opposed to the ability of humans to monitor the aircraft’s performances effectively. Phillips (2006), states that efforts to introduce unmanned aerial vehicles rather than piloted aircraft prove to be safer as there is an increased operator vigilance. In order to detect malfunctions more easily, perhaps robots should be put into operation. Malfunctioning of these aircraft could be overcome by employing multiple parallel monitoring systems.

How Analytical Systems and Data Collection Help Develop Safety Programs

The issue of vigilance effects when dealt with, can reduce dangers associated with aircrafts crash. Vigilance effects can be attributed to; boredom and the high workload associated with a high level of vigilance. Besides, performance deficit may occur because of either vigilance decrement over time or sustained low levels of vigilance. These levels of vigilance cause fatigue which is disastrous as it poses threats to passengers’ safety (Hinckley et al., 2010). On the other hand, analytical systems and data collections tools would play a vital role in enhancing aviation systems since they would integrate the safety processes and hence enhance speed and efficiency in gathering safety information. Moreover, the aspect of scalability is desirable as the safety operations and aviation structure expand in terms of ensuring that programs and processes are designed towards safety and maintenance. However, the initial cost of instituting analytical systems, especially the big data technology is quite high, but the benefits of its implementation and execution within the aviation safety docket would help the organization realize significant levels of safety and maintenance.

From the above arguments, it is evident that even with the introduction of aircraft, engines, navigations, and in-flight safety devices, accidents are still occurring with more plane crashing and killing many passengers. Therefore, we can conclude that human beings are the constant weak link in aviation safety.

References

Hinckley, C. M., Hettinger, H., & Juenger, J. E. (2010). The argument for federal legislation protecting the confidentiality of aviation safety action program information. J. Air L. & Com.75, 161.

Phillips.D. (2006). Human factor remains air safety’s weakest link – Business – International Herald Tribune. New York Times.  Retrieved from https://www.nytimes.com/2006/08/30/business/worldbusiness/30iht-transcol31.2639344.html

Rosenkrans, W. A. Y. N. E. (2018). Speaking up. Flight Safety Foundation. Aerosafety World, 34-39.

Wikstén, J., & Johansson, M. (2016). Maintenance and reliability with a focus on aircraft maintenance and spares provisioning.

Xavier, A. J. (2015). Managing human factors in aircraft maintenance through a performance excellence framework. A Graduate Research Project, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

Social Work

Social Work

Section 1

           Disparity in healthcare refers to the differences in health and healthcare as they affect the different population groups in the country. In the US, disparity in healthcare can be seen with regards to how the various population groups access the same healthcare services and how these accessibility affects the health outcomes in the diverse population groups. For example, it has been found that African Americans are negatively impacted by various health conditions such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease in comparison to their White counterparts.  Equally, other minority population groups such as the Alaska Natives have been found to be affected much more negatively by the conditions in comparison to their White counterparts. Disparity in healthcare is discriminatory in nature and therefore it needs to be addressed. The disparity also creates differences in connection to the ways that the various health conditions affect the lives of the population groups and this also needs not happen. In other words, aspects such as race, ethnicity or economic backgrounds should not dictate how a person access healthcare services and how certain diseases affect their lives. Disparity in healthcare is serious issue that needs to be eliminated if there is going to be equality in the ways that the various population group members are accessing the healthcare services.

              In the US, a legislation that addresses healthcare disparities is the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) of 2010. This is the legislation that is meant to ensure that all the citizens living in the US are provided with affordable and quality healthcare in the various geographical regions where they are. The goal of the legislation is to help the citizens of the country access the healthcare services in ways that are not discriminatory. Through ACA, the expectation is always that the health of the general population will be improved in significant ways.

        One of the statistics related to disparity in healthcare in the US is that which concerns infant mortality. According to the CDC 2013 report on healthcare disparities in the US, infant mortality rate among the African American women more than double the numbers of non-Hispanic White women(CDC, 2017). This means that the condition negatively affects the African American women and the community in general as a population group in comparison to the members of the population groups.

        The second healthcare statistic which shows disparity in healthcare in the US is that which relates to healthcare outcomes.  The National Interview Health Survey demonstrates that 13.2 % of Native Americans report being in fair or poor health, in comparison to only 9.8%  of the entire  population(CDC, 2017).  This statistics is historical in nature and is attributed to the observation that the Native Americans have often been marginalized with regards to policies and other aspects. As such, the health outcomes in the population group have been always poorer in comparison to the health of the whole population. From these statistics, it is clear that the healthcare disparity is a serious problem in the country and one that reduces the health outcomes is some members of the population more negatively than it affects the other population groups.  Because of healthcare disparity, some members of the population groups cannot access the healthcare in the ways that are expected. Despite the fact that such groups also have a right to healthcare, issues such infrastructural developments or healthcare policies end up being barriers to the ways in which the individuals can access the healthcare services.

          Overall, health disparity is impacting negatively on some members of the population groups and since it reduces the quality of life of the individuals, it is an issue that requires urgent measures so that health of all the people living in the country can be improved regardless of their geographical locations or other factors that may account for the differences observed in their lives.

Section II Articles Analysis

Citation

Benmarhnia, T., Huang, J., Basu, R., Wu, J., & Bruckner, T. A. (2017). Decomposition Analysis of Black–White Disparities in Birth Outcomes: The Relative Contribution of Air Pollution and Social Factors in California. Environmental Health Perspectives,125(10), 1-10. doi:10.1289/ehp490

Abstract

Objective:  To use the decomposition methods to underscore and understand disparities in preterm births prevalence as it takes place between the non-Hispanic black individuals and non-Hispanic White individuals who live in California with respect to neighbourhood socio-economic environment, neighbourhood air pollution and individual demographics.

Background : Racial/ethnic disparities in pre-term births are well documented in  pre-term births but studies on the role of social and environmental determinants are few. In addition, modifiable features of  the environment are beneficial in reducing preterm births.

Methods : Live singleton births in California from 2005-2010 was used  to estimate preterm births as well as other adverse birth outcomes for the infants borne by the non-Hispanic black mothers and non-Hispanic white mothers. Non extension of the Blinder Oaxaca method was to decompose racial/ethnic disparities.

Key Results:  Predicted differences in the probability of PTB between blacks and Whites infants established to be 0.056. 37.8% White to black disparity was found to be present when all predictors were put into consideration. Individual 17.5% for PTB and neighbourhood level variables  16.1% for PTB contributed to the greater proportion of the black to white difference than air pollution at 5.7%.

Conclusion: While individual and neighbourhood factors explain the differences between white and black differences in birth outcomes, the air pollution is also an important contributor as it relates to the individual and neighbourhood factors as well.

Citation

Clegg, L. X., Reichman, M. E., Miller, B. A., Hankey, B. F., Singh, G. K., Lin, Y. D., . . . Edwards, B. K. (2009). Impact of socioeconomic status on cancer incidence and stage at diagnosis: Selected findings from the surveillance, epidemiology, and end results: National Longitudinal Mortality Study. Cancer Causes & Control,20(4), 417-435. doi:10.1007/s10552-008-9256-0

Abstract

Objective:  To show that demographic and individual level socioeconomic factors contribute to the cancer healthcare disparities observed in the populations.

Background : Population based cancer registry data obtained  from the Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) are primarily  founded on medical records and administrative information. The SEER-NLMS data offers  a new vital  research resource that is critical  for health disparity research on cancer burden.

Methods:  The records of cancer patients diagnosed in 1973-2001 while living in 1 of 11 SEER registries were connected with 26 NLMS cohorts. The number of SEER matched cancer patients that were also belonged to NLMS cohort was 26,844. Matched patients that comprised of those used in the incidence analyses and the unmatched patients were compared using aspects such as sex, age group, and ethnicity, year of diagnosis, anatomic site and residence area.

Key Results

Men and women having less than a high school education experienced high lung cancer rate ratios of 3.01 and 2.02, respectively, comparative to their college educated peers. Individuals  with family annual incomes which was less  than $12,500 experienced  incidence rates that were more than 1.7 times the lung cancer rates of the individuals with incomes $50,000 or higher.

Conclusion Socioeconomic patterns in incidence differed for particular  cancers, while such patterns in connection to stage were in general  consistent across cancers, with the  late-stage diagnoses being connected with lower SES.

Citation

Faigle, R., Ziai, W. C., Urrutia, V. C., Cooper, L. A., & Gottesman, R. F. (2017). Racial Differences in Palliative Care Use after Stroke in Majority-White, Minority-Serving, and Racially Integrated U.S. Hospitals. Critical Care Medicine,45(12), 2046-2054. doi:10.1097/ccm.0000000000002762

Abstract

Objective: To   establish  whether palliative care use after intracerebral hemorrhage and ischemic stroke differs in  hospitals serving different  proportions of the minority patients.

Background: It  has been established that there are  racial/ethnic differences in palliative care resource following the occurrences of a stroke. However, it is yet to be determined if the  unclear patient or hospital characteristics are responsible for the   disparity.

Methodology; Population-based cross-sectional study was used to establish Intracerebral hemorrhage and ischemic stroke admissions  from the Nationwide Inpatient Sample between 2007 and 2011. Hospitals were classified  with regards to the percentage of ethnic minority stroke patients in which (< 25% minorities the  [“white hospitals”], 25-50% the  minorities [“mixed hospitals”], and  50% minorities [“minority hospitals”]

Key Results: Ethnic minorities experienced  a lower likelihood of getting  palliative care in comparison to the  whites in any hospital stratum. However,  the odds of palliative care for the  white and minority intracerebral hemorrhage patients was  found to be lower in minority when compared  with white hospitals.

Conclusions: The likelihoods  of receiving palliative care for the  white and minority stroke patients is lower in minority in  comparison to   white hospitals, implying  system-level factors as primary factor to show race disparities in palliative care use  following  stroke.

Trinh, M., Agénor, M., Austin, S. B., & Jackson, C. L. (2017). Health and healthcare disparities among U.S. women and men at the intersection of sexual orientation and race/ethnicity: A nationally representative cross-sectional study. BMC Public Health,17(1), 1-11. doi:10.1186/s12889-017-4937-9

Abstract

 Objective:  To determine how the interplay between sexual orientation and race affects healthcare measures.

Background:  Sexual minorities such as gays, lesbians and bisexual people are at higher risks of adverse health outcomes and are also likely to experience reduced access to care.

Method: Poisson regression method was used to determine the association between sexual orientation identity and the healthcare outcomes in individuals within and across/ethnic racial groups.

Key Results: The sexual minority individuals were likely to experience high incidences of adverse health outcomes than there heterosexual counterparts.

Conclusion: Sexual minority groups or populations report higher prevalence of poor health outcomes in some of the health condition such as HIV/AIDs in comparison to the general population members.

Section III

Seal, K. H., Metzler, T. J., Gima, K. S., Bertenthal, D., Maguen, S., & Marmar, C. R. (2009). Trends and Risk Factors for Mental Health Diagnoses Among Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans Using Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care, 2002–2008. American Journal of Public Health,99(9), 1651-1658. doi:10.2105/ajph.2008.150284

Topic and Its Applications

In this article, the authors investigate the risk factors for mental health diagnoses among the Iraq and Afghanistan veterans using the department of Veterans Affairs Healthcare. It is well established in the literature that the veterans always have high chance of developing mental health problems such as PTSD. This study could therefore be useful in social practice and policy and this is due to the fact that the findings can be applied in formulating the mental health policies for the veterans.

Research Questions and Hypotheses

The research question that the study sought to answer was: are there specific risk factors that predisposes the veterans to mental health conditions. Equally, the hypothesis followed by the researchers was that being a veteran or serving in the military is a risk factor for the development of PTSD.  There are no evident secondary research questions for the study. Based on the research question and hypothesis used by the authors, this study is evaluative in nature. The reason for the evaluative nature of the study regards the observation that the authors are attempting to determine the risk factors for the mental health issues in the veteran population. The hypothesis is not clearly stated in the study.

Literature Review

The literature could stand to be more critical and comprehensive. Although the authors review the literature concerning the veterans and the risks for the mental health challenges, there is no specific section for the literature.  This alone is an indication that the literature is not expansive in nature. While the authors also use the relevant sources to support the review, the literature hardly uses the relevant theories to support the evidence. This means that the readers cannot easily link the issue in discussion with the theories available. Theories are always vital in explaining the different issues that are investigated by research studies. Despite the limitation, the authors articulated the purpose and assumptions in clear ways. Nevertheless, there is no sufficient coverage of the theories in the article.

Sampling

The authors used a non-probability sampling method and the procedure for recruiting and screening the participants in the study is well articulated. The informed consent procedure is not explicitly described but the authors’ talk of informed consent. In the study, the authors do not highlight a sampling frame. One of the biases in the study is that of using the veterans only enrolled in the VA healthcare service. The sample population used in the study at 424, 143 is sufficient to warrant the generalization of the results. From the methodology used, the potential pattern of attrition regarded the possibility of some veterans developing complications and dropping out of the study. This could lead to incomplete data and consequently compromise the validity of the data.

Design

The authors used a longitudinal study design. This design was used to make predictions of risks factors.

     RDI1                                                                                 Y                                               RDI2                       BP2

MED

    BP1

From the model, a key strength is that it shows how different factors interact to influence an outcome. On the other hand the weakness with the approach is that it does not highlight the causal relationships.

Measurements

For this study, the independent variable related to the risk factors associated with the mental health illnesses. On the other hand, the dependent variable was the mental health condition in the individual. The variables were operationalized through the application of the possible impacts. There were no values attached to the variables.

Ethics

The authors addressed the ethical issues by discussing the protection of the participants privacies. The authors also touched on the confidentiality of the participants information.

Statistics

The descriptive statistics are described in the results and analysis sections and they presented in tables and charts. Inferential statistics are also used in the results section of the study.

Results and Discussion

One key finding of the study is that late diagnoses are the principal cause of the mental health conditions in the veterans. The results and conclusions are clearly presented in the study. The summary of the results is helpful as it provides key information.

Main Message

From this article, the main message is that there needs to be improved interventions to promote mental health wellbeing among the veterans. This article provided  comprehensive information about the topic and this can be seen from the methodological and logical conclusions reached.

References

Benmarhnia, T., Huang, J., Basu, R., Wu, J., & Bruckner, T. A. (2017). Decomposition Analysis of Black–White Disparities in Birth Outcomes: The Relative Contribution of Air Pollution and Social Factors in California. Environmental Health Perspectives, 125(10), 1-10. doi:10.1289/ehp490

CDC.(2017) Health Disparities Report 2013 Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/minorityhealth/CHDIReport.html#anchor_1547838233

Clegg, L. X., Reichman, M. E., Miller, B. A., Hankey, B. F., Singh, G. K., Lin, Y. D., . . . Edwards, B. K. (2009). Impact of socioeconomic status on cancer incidence and stage at diagnosis: Selected findings from the surveillance, epidemiology, and end results: National Longitudinal Mortality Study. Cancer Causes &amp; Control, 20(4), 417-435. doi:10.1007/s10552-008-9256-0

Faigle, R., Ziai, W. C., Urrutia, V. C., Cooper, L. A., & Gottesman, R. F. (2017). Racial Differences in Palliative Care Use After Stroke in Majority-White, Minority-Serving, and Racially Integrated U.S. Hospitals. Critical Care Medicine, 45(12), 2046-2054. doi:10.1097/ccm.0000000000002762

Seal, K. H., Metzler, T. J., Gima, K. S., Bertenthal, D., Maguen, S., & Marmar, C. R. (2009). Trends and Risk Factors for Mental Health Diagnoses Among Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans Using Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care, 2002–2008. American Journal of Public Health, 99(9), 1651-1658. doi:10.2105/ajph.2008.150284

Seal, K. H., Metzler, T. J., Gima, K. S., Bertenthal, D., Maguen, S., & Marmar, C. R. (2009). Trends and Risk Factors for Mental Health Diagnoses Among Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans Using Department of Veterans Affairs Health Care, 2002–2008. American Journal of Public Health, 99(9), 1651-1658. doi:10.2105/ajph.2008.150284

Trinh, M., Agénor, M., Austin, S. B., & Jackson, C. L. (2017). Health and healthcare disparities among U.S. women and men at the intersection of sexual orientation and race/ethnicity: A nationally representative cross-sectional study. BMC Public Health, 17(1), 1-11. doi:10.1186/s12889-017-4937-9

The Life of Fredrick Douglas

Written in 1845, the Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass is a memoir that explores slavery in the United States as seen through the eyes of Frederick Douglass, a former slave. It is considered one of the most popular works written by former slaves. It is also considered to have played a critical role in fuelling the abolitionist movement. In the memoir, the author gives an in-depth description of his life as a slave and his great desire to be a free man. Written in straightforward English, the autobiography tackles the subject of civil rights. The author also presents education as a powerful tool in the fight against slavery and oppression. This paper will explore Douglass’ personality, his educational background, as well as the treatment that the slaves received from the masters.

The book takes the reader on a journey that explores the plight of the slaves and the eventual attainment of freedom. Irony is employed as the author takes the reader through the horrors of slavery. As a child, Douglass is a slave both in mind and body. However, he manages to overcome this state and free his mind towards the end of the book. This coincides with the attainment of legal freedom. Born to a slave in Colonel Lloyd plantation, he witnessed physical abuse and savage beatings of his aunt, Hester, as a child. However, owing to his young age, he could not be whipped but carried the burden of the suffering (Douglass 6). He never met his father but had a couple of encounters with his mother before her death. However, he was not allowed to attend the funeral. Being a child, he thought that it was normal. His first turning point came when he realized that he was a slave.

The second phase of his life began when he was sent to work in Baltimore, an entirely new world for him (Douglass 7). It is in Baltimore that he learned about the power of education. Ever since he used education to fight for freedom. He became stubborn and attempted to talk back at his master who transferred him to another master, Covey. The new master tried to use hard work to kill Douglass’ spirit. After a fight with Covey, he moves from master to master and still harbors the desire to escape. When he finally finds an avenue, he escapes to New York and later to Massachusetts. He uses his narrative to teach others how to abolish slavery.

What Kind of a Person was Fredrick Douglass?

Fearlessness is one trait that Douglass possessed throughout his life. A highly strong-willed person, he strove to attain whatever he set his mind onto without the fear of consequences. He was also a very selfless person. The fact that after escaping slavery, he went back to the South to save more slaves is a testament to his selflessness. He also portrayed high levels of honesty and always kept his word. Unlike many leaders, Douglass was just moderately social. He had few friends and always acknowledged that he was ready to leave them in pursuit of freedom. His life is characterized by various instances of stubbornness. It is this stubbornness that led to his eventual escape from slavery.

Like most growing children, Douglass was a little careless, oblivious and often getting in trouble as a child. However, like any other slaves, he was determined to mature fast (Douglass 5). By the time he was a young teenager, he was already handling challenging tasks. When in danger, he portrayed his resourceful nature; he was intelligent and a great problem solver. However, he was unbending and forthright when it came to matters to do with morality. Unlike most slaves who were willing to give in as a matter of going with the flow, Douglass was always rebellious when it came to compromising his principles.

Many hardships pigeon-holed Douglass’s education. At the time, it was illegal to teach slaves how to read and write. Mrs. Auld introduced Douglas to the alphabet but stopped when Mr. Auld forbade her. However, Douglas continued to learn English from poor white boys. He would offer bread to the white boys in exchange for English lessons. At the age of twelve, Fredrick came across The Columbian Orator, a book that contained a dialogue between a master and his slave. This book helped Douglas gain insight on arguments against slavery. He practiced to read and write by writing letters on fences, walls, and on the ground.

The slaves received cruel treatment from their masters and Douglas was no exception. As a child, he was not allowed to see his mother. However, his mother sneaked to visit him when the masters were asleep at least four to five times, walking over twelve miles. When Douglas was around seven years old, his mother got sick and died. Douglas had no idea of her illness and was not allowed to attend her burial. His first master, Captain Anthony was a cruel master. Many years of slavery had made him passive to human emotion. Anthony had an overseer, Plumlee, who was in charge of operations.

His stubbornness enabled him to find his way north to freedom (Douglass 62). The older he got, the more stubborn he became. He was therefore seen as a threat to the whole system. However, he was never afraid even at his young age to term slavery as immoral. Though he was never a desired martyr, he constantly put his life on the line when he felt that he had nothing to lose. He desired to live a normal life and pursue his happiness.

Fredrick Douglass’s Style of writing, Genre; Slave Narrative

Douglas uses a straightforward style to pass his message in the narrative. He aimed to engage the audience in an understanding manner. Thus, he incorporated the use of simple, short sentences. However, he also uses elevated language thus making some segments of the book a little complicated. In some sections of his books, he tries to adopt the King James Bible version. This is seen as his way of showing off the fruits of his struggle to read and write.

For instance, when he describes the whipping that aunt Hester received, he describes how it struck him with an awful force, and he describes the horrifying incident as a bloodstained gate. He terms it as an entrance to hell. (Douglass 5). Using words such as “exhibition” to describe the horrifying event reminds the audience that despite Douglass recalling events that occurred when he was a child he is now a well-educated individual. Although he tries to show the reader that is an acquisition of education was a success, he also appreciates the fact that language can be a limitation. Thus, he reminds the audience that despite being an influential writer, he cannot capture the trauma of experience using language alone.

Douglass uses irony to capture the reader’s attention when he chooses to call himself an American slave. He intends to remind the reader that slavery did not happen in an imaginary place but in America the supposed “land of free.” He intentionally uses the phrase “Written by Himself” which might seem basic but was meant to drive a point home. In the mid-1880s, most white Americans believed that a black person did not have the power to read, less the ability to write a book. In fact, upon becoming a bestseller, some whites criticized his capabilities. Owing to this criticism, Douglass made sure to include two different prefaces to vouch for his efforts as the sole author.

The ending of the book is not surprising. Owing to the occurrence of events, a reader is likely to conclude that Douglass would get his freedom. However, the books bring in a new challenge to help the reader decipher what challenge means. The author wants the audience to understand that slavery is wrong and should be abolished. Moreover, he wants to bring more insight into the subject of freedom as something greater than a legal category. Therefore, his freedom is an anti-climax to the book since there is still a prevalence of slavery. The freedom he receives creates a new beginning for his life as an activist who is obliged to fight against slavery.

What Were Douglass’s Setbacks? How Did He React to them?

Despite life’s hurdles, Douglass was a determined person who believed in giving his all in accomplishing his missions. He managed to endure hardship when he was working for Lyold; he had single linen with no shirt to wear, no socks nor shoes. When life gave him an opportunity to work for Auld, things changed, and he met Mrs. Auld, who was willing to teach him the alphabet (Douglass 27). Unfortunately, Mr. Auld was against this teaching and discouraged his wife. He told her that educating Douglass would cause him to rebel against his command. However, this did not stop Douglass from quenching his thirst for education. He found a book, The Columbian Orator, and used it to learn and read.

Since food was scarce and he could skip several meals (Douglass 23), he found a solution for this setback. He realized that if he was able to let the horse “run away” to feed on the nearby farm, he could follow behind to go pick the horse and in the vent, he would manage to eat from the nearby farm. When Mr. Auld learned about Douglass behavior, he instructed Edward Covey to train him. Douglass was beaten to a point where he contemplated suicide. However, he realized that he was the only hope of bringing change and he decided to take action.

Instead of committing suicide, he devoted his time to teach slaves how to read and as a result, he grew more desire to challenge the status quo. However, the slave owners learned of Douglass intention and stormed the Sunday school classes thus dispersing the slaves and transferring Douglass to another plantation (Douglass 51). In his heart, he believed that change would only happen if the people were willing to challenge the status quo. He also understood that consistent agitation and tenacity would result in equality.

While working for Covey, Douglas met Anna Murray, and together they moved to New York. Owing to his Sunday school teaching experience, he became a licensed preacher and used this opportunity to sharpen his skills. He was given various opportunities to speak in church gatherings, and as an orator, he gained the best tools to use in fighting the status quo. He was simply unstoppable and used his setbacks as setups for greater achievements.

How Were the Masters Different from The Overseer’s, Their Personalities as Seen Through the Eyes of Douglass?

Commonly, authors name their characters following a reflection of their personalities, and this is the case with Douglass. His two worst overseers were Mr. Severe and Mr. Gore; he even jokes in his book about how deserving Severe suit the character (Douglass 9). One of his best masters was Mr. Covey, whose name is driven by his greedy nature (covetous). The fiction in his character’s names is a significant writing attribute that increases the reader’s attention.

Douglass named his characters with what his eyes could see and how his heartfelt. For example, he describes Mrs. Auld as a kind woman (Douglass 28). She was good to him and even attempted to teach him how to read. However, she changed and became cruel, owing to a slave resulted in robbing her compassion. When describing Covey, Douglass begins by mentioning that he was deceptive and cruel; he did not have any ounce of kindness from the start.

Each time he was introduced to a new overseer, Douglass made a habit of assessing his masters to establish their characters. He describes Mr. Gore and Mr. Severe as vicious and cruel overseers. However, he states that Hopkins was a little bit fair (Douglass 10). When he leaves for Baltimore to work for Mr. Auld, he experiences new privileges that awaken his quest for a better life and freedom. However, he learns that there is no short cut in being a good slave owner because despite Mrs. Auld’s kind heart she changed. Being a master changed her making her even crueler than her husband (Douglass 28) is. When he moves to work for Mr. Freeland, he learns that he is the best master, he has ever encountered. He even appreciates the idea that no master is as good as Freeland. Therefore, he gathers his thoughts and conforms to the idea that instead of living his life working for Mr. Freeland he would rather choose to live in a free land.

In conclusion, the paper has revealed, in analyzing the narrative, how Douglass uses straightforward language to give a glimpse of his life as a slave. He describes his personality, and he talks about how it strokes different reactions and treatment from his masters and overseers. He describes some masters like Covey as kind and calls others as cruel. However, he shows how his stubbornness helped him survive through harsh treatment. As the narrative ends, he depicts that his freedom is a revelation to slavery abolishment and the commencement of a new chapter of his life.

Works cited

Douglass, Frederick. “Narrative of the Life of Fredrick Douglass: An American Slave Written by Himself.” Boston: Anti-Slavery Office (1845).