Inequalities in the Health Care Arena

Words: 624
Topic: Health & Medicine
Updated:

Type of disparity in the U.S. healthcare system

The United States is one of the countries in the world considered to be development conscious. The indicator by United Nations Human Development shows that the general health of the people within the US is satisfactory. This, however, has been discovered to ignore the great disparity that exists within the health sector in the majority of the regions. Research has revealed that there is not enough access to healthcare and insurance coverage amongst various races, gender, and locations.

One common disparity is on racial differences, especially when it comes to the use of arthroplasty. The way healthcare workers deal with this treatment differs and varies from different locations. Skinner et al. indicate the disparities that exist between the blacks and the non-Hispanic whites and between Hispanics and non-Hispanic whites according to sex (Uncommon Insights, 2007; Skinner et al., 2005).

The occurrence of knee arthroplasty as per the geographical location is low on Hispanic women as compared with non-Hispanic white women. The findings prove that generally, the Hispanic women inhabit the locations that record a low rate of arthroplasty. On the other hand, there is a large disparity between the black men and the non-Hispanic white men, a small percentage being attributed to geographic location.

Most local health systems treat black men differently from non-Hispanic white men while women irrespective of their race, are not treated with such bias. Research is underway to establish what percentage of this disparity is due to beliefs among the black men and the percentage that is due to bias on the side of health care physicians (Lavizzo-Mourey & Knickman, 2003).

The need to eliminate disparities in the U.S healthcare system

There’s a need to eliminate this disparity because of its effects on the economy and the posterity. The disparity might result in social divisions that contribute to unnecessary hierarchies, and most of the blame is directly attributed to those working in the health care sector. The high regressive fee payment systems and exclusion from healthcare make most households slide into poverty, particularly when they resort to asset sales and loss of important people (Uncommon Insights, 2007).

The disparity may also lead to the institutionalization of segregated health care provision, and this only promotes further social division. The size and the scale of differences in the health of people living in different parts of the U.S, and between socially advantaged and disadvantaged represents a challenge to the government’s commitment to solidarity and equality to opportunity. To achieve the goal of access and reduction of health disparities, there should be equitable sharing in basic health determinants within communities (Uncommon Insights, 2007).

There is an increase in the number of the uninsured, and this has seen a shift in cost for uncompensated care. This has been based on the insurance premiums of those that have the coverage.

Majority of the medical costs of the uninsured remain uncompensated for a longer period. Many have lost coverage, and the number is expected to increase due to the rising costs of medical care, this leads to high premium charges hence majority becoming uninsured. Due to this, it makes it more expensive for firms to add new workers, thus slowing the rate of employment opportunities.

On the other hand, the already existing workers find that health care costs suppress wage increase by driving up total compensation costs. The lower productivity of uninsured workers might be a contributing factor to slow economic growth. According to the records produced by the Institute of Medicine the total losses in the economy due to uninsurance is estimated to be $65 billion and $130 per year with the annual cost of reduced productivity alone at between $87 billion and $126 billion (Sridhar, 2005).

References

Lavizzo-Mourey, R. and Knickman, J. (2003). Racial Disparities. Web.

Skinner, J. Baicker, K., and Chandra, A., (2005). Factors in Healthcare Disparities. Web.

Sridhar, D. (2005). Inequality in the United States HealthCare System.

Institute of Social and Cultural Anthropology, Oxford

Uncommon Insights. (2007). Literature review on effective sex and Gender-Based Systems. Web.