University of Phoenix
Health Care Delivery in the United States
January 13, 2013
Health Care Utilization Option 1
Health care reform in the United States is a hot topic and the source of legislation meant to make health care obtainable to Americans. Recent presidential elections have been platforms used to promote health care reform yet no one can agree on what the resolution will be. This paper will discuss ways recent health care reform measures have expanded or inhibited access to health care. This paper will discuss how changes to access may lead to influences in utilization. Concepts of what universal health care may be and how current care reflects or contrasts with this will be discussed. In addition, this paper will describe a personal experience with health care expansion either negative or positive. Health Care Reform
The Patient Care and Affordable Care Act created and signed into law to ensure that all Americans have access to health care at affordable costs and to help control the rising cost of health care. Opposed from the beginning, this reform measure creates opportunities for individuals to access insurance with pre-existing conditions, preventative service, and immunizations, dependent coverage up to age 26, and to develop information for consumers to make informed comparisons when shopping for health insurance. This Act will be implemented in 2014 and the impact of the costs that will have to be covered by employers is a huge concern. Employers are finding ways to get around paying for employees health care costs by reducing hours and keeping staff numbers under 50 to avoid tax increases under The Patient Care and Affordable Care Act. Aimed at providing for the non-insured and under insured citizens of America while providing a comprehensive guideline to choosing a health insurance plan to best fit the consumer’s needs, the costs to business and the jobs that potentially will be lost will continue to plague the attempts to reform health care. Influences on Access
The socio-economic status of a community is a composite measure based on factors such as education, income, and demographic characteristics such as sex, age, and ethnicity (Morreale, 1998, p. 1). These factors are both mutable and immutable. The mutable factors are education and income. The individual or the community can change these factors. The immutable factors are sex, age, and ethnicity. These factors are not subject to change as they are the finite aspects of an individual. Health care access in America, the most powerful country in the world should be a rite of citizenship upon birth. There should be no issue with obtaining access to health care. Many factors can influence a person’s access to health care. Age can influence access to health care because some physicians will treat only children or only the elderly. Income can influence access to health care because specialty driven health care usually involves significant out-of-pocket expense to the patient because some procedures are not covered by health insurance. Location also can be an influence on access to health care. Many patients do not have transportation because of age, dependency on family members, health reasons, or financial reasons. According to the Journal of the National Medical Association, Access to health care can influence the prevalence of chronic disease risks and cancer screening utilization in many ways (Shavers, Shanker, Alberg, 2002, p. 955). If patients are not given access to care the population of Americans not treated for chronic disease will continue to increase creating a greater strain on the health care system by over use of the emergency room as a regular care facility. Universal Health Care Concepts
Introduced by President Theodore Roosevelt, the concept of universal health care has been around for years. Introduced in different formulas and formats...