There is a variety of health service settings for handling patients, such as hospitals, ambulatory care, home healthcare, long-term care, and integrated delivery systems. Hospitals feature in and outpatient treatments by medical professionals who utilize a wide range of equipment and medication procedures. Ambulatory care services are a kind of outpatient services where health professionals perform diagnosis, dental services, minor surgeries, and other medical services in a single day outside of hospital settings. Home healthcare involves healthcare staff who offer in-home support to patients.
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Home healthcare is affordable, convenient, and useful. Long-term care services usually target vulnerable members of society, such as the disabled or chronically ill people. The services cover medical and non-medical needs, including food, transport, and healthcare services. The integrated delivery system fuses healthcare services into a single coordinated system rather than fragmented services. It is more efficient, has better coordination, and offers a broad range of care services (Corbella et al., 2018). The integrated model involves combinations of different health settings such as hospital and ambulatory care.
Due to the advancement in medical technologies and an increase in information, it can be predicted that patients will live longer and require fewer visits to hospitals. People are looking for alternative health settings that are more convenient and affordable than hospitals. Ambulatory care is offering the promise for affordability, accessibility, and high-quality healthcare than other health settings (Pressman et al., 2019).
The ambulatory care industry has been proliferating, with its surgery services gaining a market size of $33.8 billion in 2020 (IBISWorld, 2020). In the next five years, the industry will have the most impact on the economy by generating substantial financial benefits for healthcare providers and patients than other health settings. Healthcare providers are increasingly turning to ambulatory care in response to calls for affordable services.
Corbella, X., Barreto, V., Bassetti, S., Bivol, M., Castellino, P., & de Kruijf, E. et al. (2018). Hospital ambulatory medicine: A leading strategy for Internal Medicine in Europe. European Journal Of Internal Medicine, 54, 17-20. Web.
IBISWorld. (2020). Industry Market Research, Reports, and Statistics. IBISWorld. Web.
Pressman, A., Lockhart, S., Petersen, J., Robinson, S., Moreno, M., & Azar, K. (2019). Measuring Health Equity for Ambulatory Care Sensitive Conditions in a Large Integrated Health Care System: The Development of an Index. Health Equity, 3(1), 92-98. Web.
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