Essay, 4 pages (900 words)

Consumer driven healthcare

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Consumer Driven Health Care Consumer Driven Health Care Health care access has become an issue of concern in the US over the recentpast. The cost of health care is very expensive. This can be attributed mostly to the ever increasing and unpredictable high costs of living. In a bid to ensure appropriate, affordable, and high quality health care services, the government and all stakeholders involved have been advocating for consumer driven health care. This is a position paper on consumer driven health care. It is important to posit that the US government has been involved in advocating for consumer based health care. One of the most vocal politicians in the US who have in the past advocated for this is Newt Gingrich who was the speaker in the US House of Representatives from 1995 to 1999. According to Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice (2004), Newt Gingrich stipulated that “ The US health care system must emphasize patient safety and outcome: embrace information technology (IT), computing, and communications; focus on quality and a culture of quality; and center on the individual consumer” (p. 28). He believed that, educating the public and offering them appropriate and relevant information and facts related to health will enable them to make sane and powerful resolutions and as well be accountable for their pronouncements. Consequently, many leaders particularly politicians embraced the importance of adopting a consumer driven healthcare system. Available sources posit that consumer driven healthcare focuses on the individual and the public in general and it offers them with the chance to identify or chose the kind of healthcare service they deem right to meet their needs and requirements. The US government has advocated and encouraged the public to open health savings accounts where they can enjoy tax cuts and other benefits. This has been important as it is believed that allowing the public to be conscientious, accountable, and have the liberty and ability to meet the cost of some of their personal minor health needs and requirements enables them to be cognizant, acquaint themselves with the healthcare system, and also comprehend the significance or importance of healthcare. Some of the major hurdles facing consumer driven health care systems includes customs and traditions, and skewed or crooked financial systems. It is also important to elucidate the fat that health care structures in the US have been in the past planned focusing on healthcare donors, suppliers, and healthcare institution owners (Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice, 2004). Therefore, there has always been the need to establish and implement a consumer driven approach to healthcare as this can minimize expenditure on health care, elevate the value and worth of healthcare services, and also increase or boost the general wellbeing of the public. Healthcare will definitely become more affordable for Americans in the near future if the current trend of offering consumer driven healthcare services is upheld. Lack of health insurance is one of the most serious issues that makes healthcare inaccessible to many individuals in the US. In addition, there has never been the culture of saving for health. According to Jost (2007), “ Consumer Driven Health Care proposes the creation of medical or health savings accounts; coupled with high-deductible health plans” (p. 10). People are continuing to embrace the importance of saving for future eventualities related to health. Due to conventional ways of life, people have been faced with many health problems. Many people have been unable to exercise their bodies, have adopted unhealthy eating habits, and the environment has been contaminated to a great extent. These issues bring forth various medical problems such as obesity, diabetes, kidney problems, and heart problems. Increased incidences of the health conditions have on the other hand increased the demand for healthcare. Individuals are therefore forced to save and as well acquire healthcare insurance. In doing so, individual will be prepared for any health eventualities and hence healthcare will become more affordable. As a result of the shift of attention from healthcare providers and suppliers to the consumer, healthcare products will have to be manufactured with the needs and requirements of the consumer at heart. A health care system focusing on the healthcare providers and suppliers can be regarded as a commercial system whereby the main objective of healthcare services is to make profit. Shifting attention to the public, who are the consumers means that the main objective of healthcare services is to provide quality, appropriate, and affordable care to the public. This shift, in my opinion, will eventually make healthcare affordable to each and every citizen in the US. In conclusion, consumer driven healthcare centers its attention on the needs, desires, and requirements of an individual and the public in general and it proffers them with the opportunity or option to identify and chose the type of healthcare service they deem right to meet their needs and requirements. Consumer driven healthcare encourages the public to open up health savings account as this will make them be prepared for any health problems in future. This coupled with the shift of attention from the healthcare providers and suppliers to the consumer will bring down the cost of healthcare and make it affordable to all Americans. References Federal Trade Commission and the Department of Justice. (2004). Improving Health Care: A Dose of Competition. Collingdale, PA: Diane Publishers. Jost, T. S. (2007). Health Care at Risk: A Critique of the Consumer-Driven Movement. Durham: North Carolina: Duke University Press.

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