Role of Government in Public Health.
Address each of the following bullet points: 1. Public health efforts and those of private medicine complement each other and together serve the spectrum of health service needs of American society. Why then has their relationship been so contentious? 2. The Institute of Medicine report of 1999 cites two major studies that establish medical errors as one of the leading causes of death and disability in the United States. Should the federal government take the necessary steps to monitor the status of this high risk situation, as it does other epidemics, or should the government continue to trust the providers of health care to deal forthrightly with the problem? 3. Analyze why legislative attempts to address only one of the trio of rising costs, lack of universal access or variable quality of health care only worsens the remaining two. Role of Government in Public Health.
The Role of Government in Public Health
Public health focuses on prevention and control of diseases at the population level, through the informed societal choices, organized efforts, public and private communities, organizations, and individuals. The government plays a key role in addressing the challenges and ensuring health equity and addressing the health disparities within populations (Thomson et al., 2017). The Health Department in the US plays an important role in guiding the American healthcare system. The health of a population is affected by various intersectoral contributions and thus the government’s role in impacting population health is affected by several sectors outside the health systems (Thomson et al., 2018). This paper will thus discuss different aspects of the American health system and the role the government plays in public health. Role of Government in Public Health.
Healthcare within the US is provided either through public or private providers. The government through the national healthcare systems provides public healthcare while private healthcare is normally provided by private medical practitioners, “for-profit” hospitals, and “not for profit” healthcare organizations such as faith-based organizations (Rasiah et al., 2020). The American government as the key duty bearer has the duty of facilitating the availability, access, acceptability, and provision of high quality of care to the public. On the other hand, the private sector complements the public health system by availing more healthcare services in the system and thus increases access to care(Rasiah et al., 2020). Role of Government in Public Health.
The contentious relationship between the public and private health sectors is attributable to the competition between the two sectors. For example, the government funds the public health while the private providers are expected to fund their operations, despite the rising healthcare costs. The public health providers are associated with better affordability. However, at times the private providers are associated with better quality care due to personalized care and the need to gain positive reputations with its clients. Therefore, the competition between the public or private providers significantly contributes to the controversy. Role of Government in Public Health.
The government has a key role in protecting the interests of society, and this includes ensuring patient safety and the provision of high-quality care. Medical errors significantly and adversely impact patient safety and thus this indicates the importance of the government addressing medical errors. Stadhouders et al (2019) explain that medical errors are a major public health problem and a major cause of mortality within America. According to Gorgich et al (2016),the majority of medical errors do not result from poor performance by individual healthcare providers, but they are caused by systematic problems within the health care delivery. Uncovering the consistent and root cause of medical errors, therefore, needs a holistic approach. Medical errors are normally caused by multiple factors. It is thus clear that the legislative and public intolerance for medical errors indicates that medical errors require government efforts to address, and not efforts from healthcare organizations. Role of Government in Public Health.
The government can address medical errors in various ways. First, the government can provide healthcare organizations with the necessary resources to healthcare organizations to implement measures to prevent medical errors (Gaffney et al., 2016). Role of Government in Public Health.The government also has the authority to ensure that healthcare organizations adhere to the recommended safety legislation meant to prevent and reduce medical errors. For example, theMedical Errors Reduction Act of 2000requires healthcare organizations to identify optimal strategies to collect data on medical errors, promote reporting of medical errors and public disclosure of medical error reports, and implement the appropriate technology strategies to address medical errors. Moreover, the government uses various organizations such as the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and Federal Center for Quality Improvement and Patient Safety to address medical errors. Such organizations have the role of monitoring medical errors in healthcare organizations and ensuring that the organizations implement the proper medical error prevention and detection systems (Gorgich et al., 2016). Role of Government in Public Health. The government through such organizations also requires healthcare organizations to error-detection systems, carry out root-cause analyses, as well as implement measures to correct the medical errors. Moreover, government insurances such as Medicare and Medicaid, as well as the Centers for Medicare&MedicaidServices(CMS) play major roles in facilitating an improved quality of care and reducing and preventing medial errors (Gaffney et al., 2016). Role of Government in Public Health.
The three components that significantly impact healthcare within the US include healthcare costs, lack of access to care, and quality of care (Aldridge & Kelley, 2015). To effectively and address the challenges facing the American healthcare system, all the key issues affecting healthcare must be addressed. For example, the rising healthcare cost and improved access to healthcare should be addressed without undermining the quality of care. Role of Government in Public Health. For example, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) addressed access to care by increasing healthcare coverage but this did not improve the quality of care. To ensure the provision of quality of care, the government should ensure that there isan adequate number of healthcare providers (Bhatt & Bathija, 2018). Without an adequate number of healthcare providers, a high number of patients struggle to secure timely medical appointments and access healthcare as well. Therefore, it is important to ensure that universal health coverage goes hand in hand with the availability of an adequate number of healthcare providers to ensure the quality of care. Role of Government in Public Health.
Moreover, the current rising healthcare costs in America hinder access to care. For example, the high healthcare costs hinder access to preventative care and access to effective treatments and medications. Therefore, the shortfalls in the efficiency and quality of care that contribute to increased healthcare costs and poor outcomes need to be addressed(Aldridge & Kelley, 2015). A holistic approach to address the three tiers of the healthcare system is fundamental to address the increasing healthcare costs, improve insurance coverage, and also improve the quality of care. Role of Government in Public Health.
Public health involvesthe prevention and control of diseases for all populations and thus the government plays a key role in ensuring the effective and efficient provision of healthcare. The government has the key responsibility of ensuring people enjoy good health. To ensure the efficient and effective provision of healthcare, it is important to address access to care, medical coverage, and emphasize the provision of high-quality care. Role of Government in Public Health.