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Evolution of the problem The problem is faced on account of three basic reasons. These include: a.) Rising number of uninsured and underinsured people b.) Rising healthcare costs and c.) Differential access to healthcare with regard to people of color Causes for lack of access to healthcare: Insurance coverage is a strong indicator of access to primary healthcare services (Shi & Singh, 2011), and the probability of having an insurance coverage in turn is dependent on several factors such as employment status of the individual, their incomes, educational backgrounds, age group, race and ethnicity, immigration status etc (Stanfield et al., 2011)…
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Download file to see previous pages However, studies show that the percentage of Americans covered under such Insurance has declined significantly in three years, and it hit a new low with only 44.5 per cent of people covered by under this scheme (USNews, 2011). Thus, due to a steady decline in employment (Bloomberg, 2011), along with various other factors the number of people covered under health insurance has declined simultaneously, rendering access to healthcare limited to a certain section of population. Furthermore, health care costs have risen considerably over the years. Such rise in healthcare costs can be attributed to several factors such as technological developments, rise in cost of prescription drugs, rise in chronic illnesses, ageing of the population, rise in administrative costs, rise in charges by healthcare providers, inflation etc. The healthcare costs in the U.S. have currently exceeded 17% of the total GDP and continue to rise (HBR, 2011). One of the major causes of such a rise is the rise in technological developments, which has significantly increased the odds of treating long-term chronic illnesses. Furthermore, the cost of setting up new and advanced technological tools for treatment is relatively higher than the conventional methods of ailing (FDA, 2003). Also, there has been a drastic rise in the costs of prescription drugs, thus pushing the healthcare costs further. According to reports chronic illnesses such as obesity and diabetes is causing a serious upward shift in the cost of branded and prescription drugs in the U.S. Furthermore, other factors such as the rise in ageing population, increase in drug use and increase in reliance on new branded and specialty drugs are also responsible for driving the costs of healthcare services, thus making it inaccessible to a large percentage of population (AMA, 2011). Another significant problem faced with regard to access to healthcare is the differential access to healthcare services, especially as it pertains to a certain section of the population. This includes, the minority communities such as people belonging to culturally and ethnically diverse backgrounds, as well as expats. The key causes of such racial disparity in healthcare delivery include: difference in economic backgrounds, difference in health status, and access to healthcare insurance etc. According to Wang (2006) there are significant differences in health status of minority communities and the white population. Studies have shown that Blacks have a shorter life expectancy and higher infant mortality rates as compared to Whites. Furthermore factors such as racial stereotyping, prejudice, and clinical uncertainty on the part of care givers also account to health disparities among the minority communities. Strategies to overcome the problems: In order to curtail the rising number of uninsured and underinsured individuals, healthcare organizations can develop adaptive strategies; seek increased federal funding; or development of a nation-wide health insurance program, which may lend credible support to the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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