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Modernising health careReinventing professions, the state and the public$
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Ellen Kuhlmann

Print publication date: 2006

Print ISBN-13: 9781861348586

Published to Policy Press Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1332/policypress/9781861348586.001.0001

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Transformations of professionalism: permeable boundaries in a contested terrain

Transformations of professionalism: permeable boundaries in a contested terrain

Chapter:
(p.123) Six Transformations of professionalism: permeable boundaries in a contested terrain
Source:
Modernising health care
Author(s):

Ellen Kuhlmann

Publisher:
Policy Press
DOI:10.1332/policypress/9781861348586.003.0007

This chapter highlights shifts in professionalism from social exclusion towards more inclusive patterns, which are manifest in new strategies of professionalisation and more contextualised identities. Conservative actors, such as the medical profession, increasingly apply tools from new governance. However, physicians transform the tools aimed at control of providers into successful professionalisation strategies that allow them to avoid tighter control and reassert medical power under changing conditions. The health occupations studied here also make use of the concept of professionalism, but the advantages remain uncertain with respect to occupational control and status. One central issue is a gendered pattern of work and professionalisation, which is transformed but nonetheless alive in new professional projects. The state does not adequately target the potential of professionalism developed from the bottom up to modernise health care systems. This is especially true with respect to the health occupations.

Keywords:   professionalism, social exclusion, health occupations, occupational control, new governance

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