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Medical Insurance Cover for Vulnerable Age Groups

Introduction

Recent evidence asserts that young women aged 20 and above have a higher risk of developing cardiovascular diseases (Darwin, 2011). Medical experts have confirmed that early screening and detection of women among this age group is necessary in order to avert health crises before reaching a severe stage. Additionally, the latest empirical research has also demonstrated that done majority of affected women may not be in a proper financial position to cater for their medical bills (Darwin, 2011). It is against this backdrop that government agencies and other stakeholders dealing with healthcare delivery have prioritized this health challenge as one that needs urgent attention. They have urged insurance industries to offer competitive insurance covers for women diagnosed with cardiovascular diseases. It has also been noted that such medical provisions will assist in early screening and treatment of the disease (Admin, 2011).

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Policy objectives

There are quite a number of policy objectives that can be adopted in order to reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases in women over the age of 20 years. To begin with, stakeholders should strive to increase medical insurance cover for vulnerable age groups among women. This will greatly assist in safeguarding their health. Previously, women have succumbed to vascular illness due to a lack of adequate health services (Stanfield & Hui, 2002). Through the comprehensive medical cover courtesy of insurance industries, it is possible to minimize risks associated with cardiovascular related complications. Moreover, those who cannot access better health services are highly likely to benefit due to medical coverage.

Secondly, another policy alternative that can be enacted by healthcare agencies is the ease with which women can be secured from financial emergencies that are occasioned by expenses incurred when seeking treatment for cardiovascular complications (William & Song, 2010). This has been a common experience among women aged 20 years and above. Therefore, the development of security funds is indeed necessary so that medical emergencies are aptly catered for using security funds. This will enable vulnerable women to live a healthy and productive life (Unger et al, 2010).

Third, an initiative should be devised with the aim of subsidizing medical expenses incurred by women patients admitted with cardiovascular complications. Even though advances in technology have led to high treatment costs for cardiovascular diseases, it is imperative to note that healthcare agencies have the onerous responsibility of not only subsidizing related costs but also seeking long-term solutions to the challenge.

There are several risk factors that are associated with heart-related problems. Such funding can be used to develop relevant programs that are curtailed towards reducing the threat level of cardiovascular diseases. In fact, stakeholders in healthcare should emphasize more on prevention measures rather than curative programs bearing in mind that the former is more cost-effective in the long run compared to the latter. Hence, irrespective of policy alternatives that may be taken by various stakeholders in the healthcare sector, there should be more emphasis on preventive programs than hospital care of patients diagnosed with cardiovascular diseases (Alastair, Mooney & Henderson, 2005).

Therefore, intervention programs such as those spearheaded towards reducing tobacco intake among young women should be considered. Recent empirical studies on the correlation between cardiovascular diseases and tobacco use have unanimously indicated that early exposure to tobacco use is one of the leading risk factors in the development of cardiovascular complications.

Another policy area that should be addressed with equal concern is the prevention of diabetes among women aged above 20 years. While the increase in age is a potential risk factor in the onset and development of cardiovascular diseases, it is also worth mentioning that the Body Mass Index (BMI) of an individual is of great significance when computing safe body weight among people suspected to be obese.

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Hence, all the available policy alternatives should take into account some of the aforementioned risk factors while developing preventive and curative programs (William & Song, 2010). Due to advanced technologies treating cardiovascular patients is relatively expensive. Such include chemotherapy and radiotherapy services. Moreover, other diagnostic costs are beyond their reach. The stakeholders lament that, through the insurance industries patients are able to obtain loans for further treatment. In this case, complicated illnesses that affect women will not be a threat since it is possible to seek comprehensive treatment (Stahl, 2004)

Policy options

One of the inevitable policy options that healthcare agencies and other stakeholders can choose is research and development programs on areas related to cardiovascular disorder. Evidently, the onset of cardiovascular diseases among young women aged 20 years and above is still a dynamic medical phenomenon that may not be well endowed with adequate literature. It is against this backdrop that comprehensive research is needed in order to ascertain other latent elements that may be constituting risk factors before and after the onset of cardiovascular diseases. Needless to say, such an initiative will yield much-needed knowledge of cardiovascular complications.

We may not conclusively address policy options in the management of cardiovascular diseases without mentioning the role played by nutrition as a risk factor. Certainly, young obese women in their early twenties may find it quite challenging to manage their weight as they approach their late twenties and early thirties. On the same note, poor eating habits may equally be quite cumbersome to do away with as age progresses (Short, Shea & Powell, 2003). The stakeholders enforced that; women who are below the age of 65 years should be provided with comprehensive medical care through the insurance industries. In this case, those with preexisting cardiovascular diseases will be eligible for services. Additionally, young women with undetected symptoms should be subjected to regular screening to manage risks. Emphasizing this, all the health products including prescribed drugs and preventive care were to be considered. Patients were to be given enough time to make arrangements on how to repay back the loan awarded by the insurance industries. Moreover, medical benefits will be made accessible and cheaper to ensure that every woman will benefit from insurance services. However, those interested will obtain a membership card where they will be expected to pay a fixed sum to the insurance industries (Rogers, 2004).

Policy evaluation

Prior to the policy made by the ministry of health, research was conducted by the stockholders to evaluate its impacts. From the research done, the policy was found to be cost-effective. In this case, the insurance company will benefit from the incumbents who will become their long-time clients. In line with this, women will benefit by receiving comprehensive medical care at an affordable rate (Rogers, 2004). From the evaluation done, there are positive impacts associated with good health for women. For instance, insurance services are one of the effective tools of risks management in the future (Rogers, 2004). In this case, they give the state potential to prepare and respond to complex issues affecting public health. Additionally, these policies will enhance wellness and health in public lifestyles preferably among women.

Criteria for evaluation

There are quite a number of evaluation criteria that stakeholders in healthcare can use to monitor the policy based on desired goals and efficiencies. Few researchers should be consulted to aid in examining the effectiveness of healthcare covered by insurance. Such a procedure is indeed necessary for managing and protecting public health (Anon, 2011). Evaluation should be conducted on the financial strength of insurers (McKenzie, Jan & Brad, 2005). Their financial strength and performances are usually reliable for most clients. Moreover, from our objectives, health insurance industries have been voted the best option for managing cardiovascular ailments. Additionally, studies conducted in other countries indicate that due to such services being used by their citizens, it has been possible to minimize such ailments (Gay, Kent & Quah, 2009).

Alternative policies

Certainly, there are people who can not afford health insurance services. Others may fail to be eligible hence are forced to look for alternatives (Guest, 2011). For instance, health programs act as a second option and are highly preferred for being cheaper. It is evident that many clients avoid insurance industries for their over-priced benefits. Recently, more programs have emerged for the well-being of those without insurance coverage. Such programs require low-cost cards for prescriptions. Since they are cheap and nonrestrictive, the clients are able to receive treatment even for preexisting conditions (Guest, 2011). From the analysis made, alternative programs can be used to reinforce health insurance industries in minimizing cardiovascular diseases in women. Additionally, individuals can join health cooperatives informed of organizations or families that will help them seek affordable health services (Guest, 2011).

Comparison

Health care programs are relatively expensive compared to healthcare covered by insurance industries. Moreover, they are more popular and hence are acclaimed by many users than insurance services. Additionally, they are not restrictive to clients. Contrastingly, insurance services demand clients to be eligible, have a membership card and deposit a specific amount of premium every month. Furthermore, insurance companies are very specific and hesitant when providing cover to certain diseases since they fear incurring compensation huge costs. In this case, health programs are low-cost options for those clients who are less endowed financially. However, services provided by alternative programs are not long-term like those of insurers (Patel & Mark, 2006).

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Recommendations

Certainly, it was recommended that all women at the age of 20 years and above, engage themselves in health service providers. Such recommended groups include insurance companies, health cooperatives and private health programs. Additionally, women are recommended to attend regular screening sessions to ensure that they are safe from cardiovascular diseases. Moreover, insurance providers should subsidize their premium rates to make their benefits affordable (Green & Rowell, 2007).

Conclusion

Insurance industries assist individuals to handle huge losses that might be incurred for a lack of medical funds. Such losses include deaths and enormous bills in hospitals. In particular, women above the age of 20 have been found to be highly vulnerable to cardiovascular diseases and therefore they can be relieved of high medical bills when they are under insurance cover. However, alternative policy options tend to minimize risks associated with cardiovascular complications in women.

References

Admin. (2011). Association Health Plans – Alternative Options for Health Insurance.

Alastair, M., Henderson, J. & Mooney, G. (2005). Economics of Health Care. New York: Taylor & Francis.

Anon. (2011).Fast, Free, Secure Michigan Health Insurance Quotes. Web.

Darwin R. (2011). Epidemiology and Prevention of Cardiovascular Diseases. Boston: Jones & Bartlett Publishers, Inc.

Green, A. & Rowell, J. (2007) Understanding Health Insurance: A Guide to Billing and Reimbursement. New York: Cengage Learning

Guest, T. (2011). Traveling Alternative Roads: Other Options for Health Care.

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Guy C., Kent, H. & Quah, R.(2009). Health Systems Policy, Finance, and Organization. Oxford: Academic Press.

McKenzie, F., Brad L. & Jan, L. (2005). Planning, implementing and evaluating health promotion programs: a primer. New York: Pearson Publishing Inc.

Patel, M. & Mark, E. (2006).Health care politics and policy in America. New York: M.E. Sharpe, Inc.

Rodgers, J. (2004). Selected Options for Expanding Health Insurance Coverage. New York: Diane Publishing, Inc

Short, F., Shea, D. & Powell, M. (2003). Health Insurance for Americans Approaching Age Sixty-five: An Analysis of Options for Incremental Reform. Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law. 28(1): 41-76.

Stahl, M. (2004).Encyclopedia of health care management. California: Sage Publishing, Inc.

Stanfield, P. & Hui, H. (2002). Introduction to the health professions. Boston: Jones & Bartlett Publishers, Inc.

Unger, J. et al. (2010). International Health and Aid Policies: The Need for Alternatives. New York: Cambridge University Press.

William, O. & Song, H. (2010). Essentials of Health Care Finance. Boston: Jones & Bartlett Publishers, Inc.

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