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AWA Essay - Manhattan CAT2 - Please Review

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Halimah_O Junior | Next Rank: 30 Posts Default Avatar
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Target GMAT Score:
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AWA Essay - Manhattan CAT2 - Please Review

Post Sun Sep 11, 2016 10:26 pm
Elapsed Time: 00:00
  • Lap #[LAPCOUNT] ([LAPTIME])
    ESSAY QUESTION:

    The following appeared in a medical magazine:
    "Art and music have long been understood to have therapeutic effects for individuals who suffer from either physical or mental illnesses. However, most doctors rarely recommend to patients some form of art or music therapy. Instead, doctors focus almost all of their attention on costly drug treatments and invasive procedures that carry serious risks and side-effects. By focusing on these expensive procedures rather than low-cost treatments such as art and music therapy, doctors are doing a disservice to their patients and contributing to the rising cost of health care in the United States."

    RESPONSE:
    The argument states that by focusing on expensive procedures rather than low-cost treatments such as art and music therapy, doctors are doing a disservice to their patients and contributing to the rising cost of health care in the United States. This conclusion is based on the premise that art and music have long been understood to have therapeutic effects for individuals who suffer from either physical or mental illnesses and that most doctors rarely recommend to patients some form of art or music therapy. As it stands, this argument is flawed as it relies on a number of unsubstantiated assumptions.

    First, The argument assumes that low-cost treatments such as art and music therapy are substitutes for costly drug treatments and invasive procedures used by doctors for treatment of mental or physical illnesses. The argument does not provide any evidence where music and art served as a treatment in place of drugs. There might be certain illnesses that can only be treated with drugs and invasive procedures. Such illnesses not covered in this argument, leaves room for one to suggest that any illness whether mental or physical can be treated with art and music.

    Second, the argument assumes rather strongly that having therapeutic effects is equivalent to curing illnesses. The word therapeutic is used rather ambiguously as it could simply mean that art and music provides some form of comfort for people suffering from mental or physical illnesses or it could mean something else. If, for instance, a patient suffering for cancer listens to music or looks at a picture, does this guarantee a cure for cancer? The argument leaves this question unanswered.

    Finally, the statement that doctors are doing a disservice to their patients and contributing to the rising cost of health care in the United States does not put into consideration the cost of purchasing art or music. If indeed, a patient can actually be cured by listening to music and art, the cost of the art or music must be weighed against the cost of drugs and invasive procedures for the argument to hold. If, for example, it costs a patient $100 to buy drugs which might be the only prescription from the doctor and it costs the patient $10,000 to buy a piece of art that will cure his illness in the same manner as the drug, the argument will be weakened.

    In sum, the conclusion will be considerably strengthened if the issues highlighted above are addressed. However, as it stands, the argument is flawed and still open to debate.

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