Healthcare Industry Paper

Topics: Health care, Inflation, Gross domestic product Pages: 7 (2483 words) Published: May 5, 2008
Healthcare Industrial Overview
When a person thinks that he or she is feeling under the weather where is the first place that they think to go? Most people would say the hospital, and in most cases that is true. At a healthcare facility, doctors, nurses, and assistants that can help people recover from their illnesses, and experience a sense of benevolence from the environment. The healthcare industry not only provides healing and comfort for people in the world, but it also provides wages and stability for households. The healthcare industry is one of the most effective establishments in the economy. Establishments in this industry respond to millions of people around the world, regardless of age, race, or gender. With new technological advances and job opportunities, businesses in this industry continue to excel. Statistics reports that healthcare is one of the largest and fastest growing industries in the United States labor force today (Bureau of Labor Statistics, 2006). Like any other industry, healthcare experiences circumstances that affect the economy, whether admirable or disruptive. History

Over the last 100 years people have come to think of healthcare as a third party responsibility separate from health itself. This change in thinking is a recurring issue with profound effects on the development of modern healthcare. At the beginning of the 19th century, medical theory had begun to advance, but medicine was still primitive and mainly involved the field of midwives, herbalists, homeopaths, and home remedies. Healthcare was not regulated and anyone could become a doctor. This led to cures that were not better, and sometimes worse, than home cures. In 1900, there were only a few hundred hospitals in the United States. By 1930 there were 7,000. (Healthcare History and Issues, 2004) Over the same period, prepaid healthcare arrangements had begun to form such agencies as Blue Cross Blue Shield, Kaiser Foundation Health Plans, and Group Health Association. In the 1940s, the supply for labor was short and the government imposed wage controls. Employers began to offer their employees health insurance as a fringe benefit in order to deal with this situation. The government encouraged this new development by offering businesses income tax exemptions for healthcare related expenses; this started the trend of the employer as a health insurance supplier. The groundwork of modern healthcare had been developed, but it would take years before it would grow into the healthcare system recognized today. Industry Overview

The US healthcare system manages the largest healthcare market in the world. The healthcare industry is massive and encompasses people who work in almost every profession. In addition to being the largest industry, healthcare remains among the fastest-growing.

About 545,000 establishments of widely varying sizes and structures make up the healthcare industry, according to the Occupational Outlook Handbook by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau for Labor Statistics (BLS). (Overview: The Healthcare Industry) The industry includes establishments that provide health services such as medical and surgical. It also includes individual doctors, clinics and hospitals, dental and medical laboratories, specialty outpatient facilities, and home health services.

In 2004, the BLS ranked healthcare as the largest industry in the U.S.—providing 13.5 million jobs, including 13.1 million jobs for wage and salary workers and about 411,000 jobs for self-employed. (Overview: The Healthcare Industry) SWOTT Analysis

Quality of Life (longer lifespan)
Job Opportunities-The healthcare industry also provides people employment without specialized training beyond high school. Weaknesses:
Workforce shortages
High healthcare cost
Difficulty in changing lifestyles/health habits that lead to obesity, diabetes, etc Opportunities: •Through better coordination we will get a better...
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