Healthcare in the U.S.: – A System or Not?


There has been much debate on the issue of healthcare services in the United States. One major point in the debate has been whether the healthcare in the country qualifies as a system given the various disparities in efficiency, cost of care, fairness, access to health care, and quality of services. Such questions thus bring in another question what a system should be. In its entirety, however, there is need for immense reforms to be undertaken in the health care in this country.

Definition of system

By definition, a system must be characterized by a number of elements. These elements create a correlation and harmony within the system and thus work toward efficacy and proficiency of the whole. Thus every unit in the system is governed by these characteristics which are uniform to every part of the whole system. A system is therefore identified by well organized rules, regularly arranged principles or facts and classified in an orderly form so as to demonstrate or exhibit a logical plan connecting the various parts. The system in the context of healthcare system thus adds up to orderliness or organization of health services proceeding (Singh & Shi, 2004).

Literature review of concept and relation to healthcare

According to Singh (2004), health care services given to patient vary significantly due to differences in health care providers and the their practices. Effective treatments which are less costly are not used as it should be. It is important to note that some health care services are over used and these leads to increase in costs incurred by the patient. There are a lot of disparities in drug prescription due to differences in geographical backgrounds of doctors and patients. This arises because of the differences hospital capacity that is available in certain areas. Some regions have little amount of hospital capacity than others.

Patients have experienced a lot of problems due to poor care coordination. The US health care system has faced a lot problems due lack of proper coordination between the primary care doctors and other providers. The relationship between the different parties in health care system is very worrying and this calls for more attention. Singh & Shi (2004), found that patients no longer trust their doctors as they believe that they expose them to a lot of risks hence frustrating many patients from seeking heath care services.

Brown (2008), the administrative costs incurred by the US health care system is very high. The studies showed that this increase in cost is attributed to changes in the distribution of administrative expenses. Health Insurance Plans are approximately 13 percent over the last 50 years due to increase in cost of adjudicating claims, medical management and high cost of negotiating discounted fees with health care team

Martin (2008), most people have been excluded from health care coverage because of the enrollment roles. According to US Census Bureau, 50 million Americans are not covered by the health care system and these are mostly working class persons whose employers do not provide health insurance. The coverage differs from one state to another. Some do not provide coverage for working class children and adults.

Opinion of health care system in US organization/Development

The health care providers and delivery system calls for substantial changes to foster high quality delivery services. Systematic change should also be carried out to enhance efficiency in health care delivery services. According to Modern Fundamental Health Care opinion leaders, the reforms that should be made in the health care system should e unequivocal and sufficient. These leaders have also proposed that universal coverage which is coupled with a lot of care is very significant and should be accessible by majority people in the country. Universal coverage is a prerequisite for achievement of high performance and quality service delivery.

They further suggest that that the US health care system is very broken that has limit the ability of all Americans to have patient-centered practices that can health improve health care services delivery (Singh & Shi, 2004).

It is mandatory to have specific strategies that improve the organization of health care delivery systems in US. There should be very strong primary care in order to improve the health care system. Care coordination and care transitions management are very paramount aspects as way forward to improvement of the health care system. Doctors and other health care providers need to change their mode of operation. It is important to reform remuneration packages for doctors and health care providers in order to boost their morale in providing health care delivery services.

This particularly concerns the traditional payment scheme where the doctors can be encouraged through fee for services incentives. It is imperative to have payment reformation as a way of changing the health care services provision. Supplemental payments to primary care providers is an important factor in ensuring comprehensive delivery of services by health care team (Brown, 2008)

Government should also play a very important role in provision of good facilities and other infrastructures that can be used by the health care system. Most of the opinion leaders support government funding for infrastructure to enhance coordinated care. Government should establish retail health clinics as they are more convenient for patients and those services are provided at a cheaper price

In conclusion, high quality services in health care system can be achieved through an organized system which encompasses care coordination, proper health information exchanges, cooperation between the health staff and efficiency of the equipments used (Brown, 2008)

References List

Martin, N (2008). Insuring America’s Health. Montreal Economic Institute, pp. 130.

Singh & Shi, L. (2004). Delivering health care in America: System approach. International Journal of Nursing Practice, 12(5), 370-390.

Brown, D. (2008). Geographic Variation in Prescription. Institute of Medicine at the National Academies of Science, 15-29.


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