| Unit 5 IP 1 The American Healthcare Delivery System| The Ethical and Legal Aspects of Healthcare| | | | | The American medical care system is centered on patients and their needs using tools such as pharmaceutical companies, insurance companies, specialty fields, training institutions, and rehabilitation. These individual sectors assist in the delivery of healthcare to ensure that patients receive the care they require and deserve. This health care model is similar to the ancient Greece model of Aesculapius who was a strict patient and health care provider that was aggressively centered on the patient.
However, this type of healthcare is currently costing approximately $3 billion per day. This does not mean that all Americans are receiving good care, if any at all. (Fremgen, 2009). Many U. S. citizens are concerned about the cost of services and access to medical care, therefore, alternate measures must be considered to effectively ensure the health of the nation. There is another model from this historical time called Hygeia that focused on prevention in the context of public interest. Today this prevention would correspond with measures such as health screenings, diet and exercise, counseling, immunizations, and preventative medications.
By creating a health care system that is efficient and effective, the citizens of the U. S. can live much healthier lives. Such tools as pharmaceutical and insurance companies, specialty fields, training groups, and rehabilitation concentrate on the individuals needs pertaining to treatment. The pharmaceutical companies provide the medications to control or cure a particular illness or ailment. Prescriptions can cost anywhere from $3 (Wal-Mart, and/or CVS generic) to $100+ for a single bottle of medication. Most prescriptions are prescribed after the person has already been diagnosed and is ready for treatment.
These treatments can also assist in maintaining a particular level of health. The insurance companies are in place to provide assistance for healthcare services needed and performed for its consumers. Due to the dramatic advances in medicine over the past two decades, there continues to be an interest in specialization among physicians. (Fremgen, 2009) Anesthesiology, cardiology, dermatology, oncology, pediatrics, psychiatry, and gynecology are a few of the most common specializations in the medical field that work with patients before and after a diagnosis has been made. Fregmen, 2009) Training institutions like university hospitals give the provider an environment to practice and perfect his/her skills. Rehabilitation is used to assist the patient after they have been diagnosed with a reversible illness or injury. It is used to assist the patient in working to correct any problems he/she might have. All of these tools are used in the current healthcare system model and have helped to define the existing state of patient care. By altering the chosen health care provision model to view the system at a different angle, new information can be gathered to improve the system to meet the needs of everyone.
The Hygeia is another healthcare model to be considered. It was a public health model that focused on prevention in the context of public interest. It has great potential to assist in creating a healthier world. In using this model the new system would be like “a mother’s healthcare system”. Moms are always trying to keep their children healthy and happy. They ensure that the child receives vaccines, health screenings (check ups) and make sure that the child has access to healthy foods.
Moms make certain that their children have opportunities to participate in physical activities like playing in the park, soccer, basketball, cheerleading, and other activities that promote exercise. They safeguard their children to help prevent them from things that can harm their health. This new prevention system would allow individuals to help with their own health by the taking the necessary steps to ensure they are eating healthy, exercising, and avoiding all things toxic whether it be physical or mental influences. This system would be designed to promote healthier living and assist people and communities on how to make the transition.
A healthcare system centered on prevention has many obligations to the communities of the U. S. Legally the Hygeia healthcare system will require that the government will be obligated to provide funding to agencies like the Department of Health and Human Services, whose mission is to specialize in community-based efforts to improve the economic and physical health of people in distressed areas. (U. S. 2010) There should also be federal laws in place to ensure that regardless of financial status, no one can be refused a health screening or assessment.
The government will be responsible for passing other laws that support the new system and if not be held accountable for the end result. This new system will hold health care providers responsible for providing information to individuals that explains the cause and affects of poor lifestyles. Throughout history the first step in any successful transformation has always been to educate the individuals because without the understanding of where things began, progression will never be able to occur. After educating a population, there must be access to demonstrate the understanding of what has been taught.
According to the Obama administration, the USDA estimates that 23. 5 million people, including 6. 5 million children, live in low-income areas that are more than a mile from a supermarket. (U. S. , 2010) It will be difficult for a community to demonstrate their understanding of healthy living if they cannot access healthy foods. This new healthcare system will have an obligation to teach, prepare, and create opportunities for the citizens to live healthier lifestyles. Although, the model of Hygeia is about prevention to help create a healthier population, there are some side effects to this model.
This model could have a major financial impact on the economy if we work on the before instead of the after. With people becoming educated on eating right, exercising, and living better lives, they will become healthier individuals. This may not sound like such a bad thing except there are many companies that thrive off of the failures of others. For starters the pharmaceutical industry is a billion dollar industry by itself. If the need for medicines has reduced this could have a significant effect on jobs, revenue for states and the federal government. Wang, 2009) When the need for medicines has reduced, there is a significant effect on research projects, profits, and anything else that is benefited by these major companies. The insurance industry is also another billion dollar industry that could be affected by this system. (HealthPac, 2010) Because healthcare costs are through the roof, consumers rely on insurance to assist them in the event they ever need care. They are willing to pay expensive premiums because the thought of thousands of dollars of medical expenses is very unappealing and most cannot afford it.
Under the new system the families will be healthier and less concerned with needing this coverage; therefore, they would less likely be willing to pay for these expensive premiums. The new healthcare system could be beneficial in many ways, but there are also problems facing this different model that could cause a ripple effect in the U. S. economy if not handled correctly. From the Hygeia model it very easy to notice the mistakes that can be made in everyday life. It is so easy to get caught up in the fast pace of everyday life that prevention goes on the back burner.
Individuals must realize the importance of getting health screenings and immunizations regardless of their age. It is also important to start children off early with good healthy eating habits as well as the importance of physical exercise. When the child grows up he/she will have already created the habit and be more likely to continue with this style of living and pass it down to their children. By setting good examples for oneself, an opportunity is created to set the example for others to follow. References Fremgen, B. F. 2009) Medical law and ethics. New Jersey: Pearson Prentice Hall U. S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2010) Obama Administration Details Healthy Food Financing Initiative. Retrieved from http://www. hhs. gov/news/press/2010pres/02/20100219a. html Wang, H. (2009). U. S. pharmaceutical industry report 2008-2009. Retrieved from http://www. pr-inside. com/us-pharmaceutical-industry-report-r1291427. htm Healthcare statistics in the United States. (2010). Retrieved from http://www. healthpaconline. net/health-care-statistics-in-the-united-states. htm