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Accessing the health care system - Research Paper Example

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To determine how to access healthcare and who are most likely to access it we need to look at the physical and social environment of healthcare. A large number of the population does not have access to healthcare due to no insurance or underinsurance whereby most insurance plans do not cover many services…
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Accessing the health care system
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Accessing the Health-care System To determine how to access healthcare and who are most likely to access it we need to look at the physical and social environment of healthcare. A large number of the population does not have access to healthcare due to no insurance or underinsurance whereby most insurance plans do not cover many services. Many working adults do not have health-care insurance and therefore avoid going to a doctor. As a result serious illnesses are discovered when it is too late. Access to health-care in the United States is tied into health insurance plans which are available through the employer. This system has been failing our population for decades. At the other extreme the poor that are covered by Medicaid or fee for service Medicaid (FFS) use the emergency room more often than the working class insured individual because most doctor’s offices do not accept Medicaid (Rand). Even though the United States is a highly industrialized country that spends millions in the advancement of health care, accessibility is a large problem for huge segments of its population. One’s financial status or income and insurance plan are just two of the factors that determine who has access to healthcare. Accessibility to health care is a vast spectrum of dynamics with a domino effect. Some of the factors involved in the spectrum are educational, social, economic, geographic and cultural. For instance, individuals with a higher level of education are less likely to indulge in smoking and excessive drinking. They attend gyms, eat nutritious meals and overall maintain a healthier lifestyle. These individuals also have the finances to maintain this lifestyle because they have better paying jobs than the ones with less education and living at poverty levels. They also live in upscale, safer neighborhoods. Therefore, it can be said that higher levels of education lead to better jobs (with healthcare insurance), and is directly related to a better health status and a lower risk of chronic diseases, with a diverse group living in better neighborhoods. In this regard, these individuals have accessibility to health care with positive outcomes. On the other end of the spectrum there are two groups for who accessibility to health care is a major problem. On one hand we have the working class poor. Strange as it may sound this group live in decent neighborhoods, many of them have an undergraduate degree and try to “keep their head above water” all the while they are riddled with expenses because they are not insured, or underinsured, not to mention their living expenses outweigh their household income. Minority groups such as African Americans, Mexican Americans and other groups from Latin America who are on Medicaid experience problems with community physicians who will not see them or their offspring because these physicians do not accept Medicaid. It is a fact that it is even more difficult to find a specialist who accepts Medicaid. The reimbursement for such services is so meager that the specialist cannot, even if his heart is in the right place, see his medical practice surviving on such meager reimbursements. Therefore, these individuals tend to access the emergency room department more frequently than those with private health care insurance. Accessibility to health care in the United States is available to those who have private insurance plans which are tied in to their employer, regardless of race, ethnicity. education or geographic location. The population that access health care are the ones with medical insurance through their employers and to a lesser extent those on Medicaid. Reference Chandra, Anita et al. “Barriers to Health Care.” Health and Health Care Among District of Columbia Youth. The Children’s National Medical Center. Rand Health xviii. 2009. www.rand.org/health. Web. Read More
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