Free course

Medicine transformed: on access to healthcare

Free statement of participation on completion

Access to healthcare is important to all of us. Did the arrival of state medicine in the twentieth century mean that everyone had access to good medical services? If you fell sick in 1930 where could you get treatment from a GP, a hospital, a nurse? This free course, Medicine transformed: On access to healthcare, shows that in the early twentieth century, access to care was unequally divided. The rich could afford care; working men, women and children were helped by the state; others had to rely on their own resources.

Course learning outcomes

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • describe the wide range of methods of promoting health, preventing disease and providing care that were available to patients of different social groups and classes
  • demonstrate an awareness of the inequalities of services – in terms of both quality of care and access to different services – open to different social groups and classes
  • assess the significance of the roles of central and local governments, the private sector and voluntary associations in providing medical services
  • understand the concept of ‘medicalisation’ and assess the degree of power doctors had over people's lives in the early twentieth century.