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Social Resources

Introduction

During the past 25 years, a great deal of attention has been paid to the role of the social environment in matters of health, disease, disability, and illness (Cohen, Gottlieb & Underwood, 2000). In particular, many investigators have narrowed their focus to the personal community in which people are enveloped, examining the ways in which family members, friends, neighbours, and co-workers exercise their influence on a multitude of health behaviours, on morbidity, and even on mortality. Persuaded by the evidence documenting the health-protective effects of these personal communities, researchers have designed a variety of social programmes aimed to remedy deficiencies in certain aspects of the immediate social circle, to enrich its resources, or to compensate for deficiencies by mobilizing support from sources outside the ...

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