Health Care Policy – Essay Sample
The question of Health Care Reforms in America seems to be getting lots of attention from various stakeholders. These include the political leadership, the business community, professionals in health and associated professions, Non-governmental Organizations and the citizens. This is because these reforms, if fully implemented, will have far-reaching implications on all those involved. In considering this policy, the issue of cost and access is quite crucial because the two go hand in hand.
The health Care Policy rests on the position that the US government intends to reduce its budget on Medicare and channel funds to the new Health Insurance policy to take care of the uninsured aged, if it is legislated. It is also meant to ensure that all other sections of the citizens get catered for in their own unique way, so that nobody is negatively affected. This policy is however likely to fail since there is no guarantee that its implementation will be fool-proof. It also appears to be putting a lot of emphasis on how resources will be obtained from most sectors of the country that are not necessarily part of the federal government. There is therefore need to come up with a policy which can be sustained after implementation (Brandt, 2009).
One way of doing this is by merging small health insurance companies into bigger ones and encourage people to buy policies when they need them, as is the case in Massachusetts. Pooling of premiums makes the policies cheaper. The government could also consider introducing subsidies to insurance premiums paid by people, so that all citizens join insurance programs. Another way would be introduction of taxation on those who are able to pay for higher insurance so as to spread the cover to those who cannot. This is however likely to cause disaffection among the employed; together with their trade unions. There would also be need for the government to change its financing expenditure so that more resources are channeled into the provision of medical services as opposed to other sectors that are not very crucial. It is also possible for both patients and doctors to be given incentives so as to make provision and access to medical services efficient. Doctors will thus be able to dedicate most of their time meeting the patient’s needs, while the patient will be willing to seek medical attention when in need of it. It would also assist when it comes to decision making as far as matters of health are concerned. Giving doctors incentives would also make them seek to give prescriptions that are cost effective (Brandt, 2009).
Other approaches could also suffice. There could for example be put in place a program where doctors are made to understand and accept the need for a reduction on their payment as a way of making a contribution to the health care programs of the society. In any case, they are the ones who deal with patients, and understand their suffering better. Hospitals which provide health services could also be prepared for less government subsidy, so that the money saved goes into providing services to those who cannot afford. Together with this, would be the need to halt construction of any new government health facilities so that the existing ones are expanded and equipped with personnel, facilities and drugs to meet the needs of the patients. There could also be a shift from curative to preventive measures in health care management. Less resources are likely to go into proactive preventive than reactive curative strategies (Holt, 2009).
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