Irene Del Mastro N.

Irene Del Mastro N.

Department of Sociology, University of California, Los Angeles

Irene is a medical sociologist who studies the ties between medicine and poverty governance. Her dissertation uses participant observation, in-depth interviews, and documentary analysis to examine the expansion of healthcare for the unhoused in California and its implications for health inequalities and homelessness governance. Irene’s research documents how medical providers working on the streets of Los Angeles navigate three tensions, (1) who among the large and widespread homeless population becomes their patients and who are left behind, (2) what services they provide considering the multiple social and medical needs of the unhoused and the bureaucratic, technological, and organizational challenges of practicing medicine on the streets, and (3) how they engage the unhoused—a population known for distrusting the medical system—in medical care. This research has been supported by the American Sociological Association and The Haynes Foundation.

Irene was first trained as a sociologist at the Pontificia Universidad Católica del Perú. She received an M.A. in Gender and Women’s Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an M.A. in Sociology from the University of California, Los Angeles. Her previous work has informed policies that address gender and health inequality in Perú and has been published in multiple academic and media outlets.

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