Health Care Availability
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Health care is the diagnosis, treatment, prevention and control of illness, injury and other physical and mental impairments in human beings through the services offered by the medical and allied health professionals (Houghton, 2004). For health care to be successful, it requires the use human resources, natural resources, financial resources and technological resources. There are three types of health care specifically; primary care, secondary care and tertiary care. Primary health care is the care a patient gets at first contact with a health care system; it usually involves coordination of this care and continuity over time. Secondary health care is the treatment a patient receives from an expert whom have been recommended by a primary care provider. Tertiary health care is a medication that a patient receives in a health care center with highly trained professional and advanced technology.
Primary health care is the provision of essential health care; thus, it is the basis of a health care system. Primary health care provides initial and most of health care services to an individual and society at large. This is in contrary to secondary health care, which is short term and ailment oriented for the purpose of helping the primary care practitioner. Tertiary care is a health care for patients with unusual illness which require highly specialized services and technology (Institute of Medicine, 1996). Primary health care, compared with secondary care, has low-cost services since services delivered by specialist are of high cost due to a tendency to use advanced technology and orientation to curative rather than preventive medicine (Institute of medicine, 1996).
One of the factors which lead to a better health care is access to medicine. If the patients have no access to the medicine, then we cannot say there is good health care. Lack of medicine can be caused by several issues. The major issues which lead to lack of medicine can be considered as; affordability, availability and appropriateness. Affordability here refers to the situation whereby you can get the medicine wherever you are, but this usually is not the case in many instances. For example, a patient might not afford to purchase a particular drug due to financial constraints or the government cannot afford to provide that particular medicine. Availability means that the medicine is obtainable in your area of stay. A good example here is whereby some regions are not affected by certain types of diseases like others. This clearly implies that the medicinal needs of these regions would be different. Appropriateness is whereby the patients are given the suitable or proper medicine for a certain disease. Appropriateness is very crucial because, if a patient is not given the right medicine, he/she may die or be affected by other complications. The prescription given by the medical practitioner should be correct to avoid overdose deaths (Houghton, 2004).
Another major factor which contributes to a better health care is the availability of good health care centers which are well equipped and the number of physicians in those centers is enough to serve the surrounding community. Shortage of physicians may be disastrous because it can cause a lot of deaths if the physicians cannot cope with the number of patients to be served. These health centers should be able to apply advanced technologies to treat certain diseases effectively. Health care centers should be networked so that physicians are able to access critical details of their patients who have attended other centers. In short there should be a central resource for information on health care (Institute of medicine, 1996). In the health center, there should be an emergency department to cater for those with fatal diseases and other emergency medical attention. The emergency department should always be able to receive any patient as soon as possible so as to avoid unnecessary deaths. This means that the emergency department should provide an emergency room which is always ready with any kind treatment required. All the machines in this room should be maintained properly so that they can be functioning all the time.
Different groups of people require different medical attention. These groups include; the aged, children, youths and women. For us to say there is good health care in our community, all attention needed by these groups should be provided. For instance, there should be a home care system to cater for the aged who cannot to travel to the hospital now and then. Since our young children requires special medical treatment due to their weak immune system, we should make sure that our hospitals have specialist in this area, and there should be a department to cater for our young ones, since their medical needs is usually different from other groups. Pregnant mothers need special medical attention; therefore, our health care centers should have a department dealing with their issues. When all the groups needs have been taken care of we say there is good health care system (McWhinney, 1986).
Lastly each nation should have a national health care system which can take care to low-income people and partially all its citizen. There are a number of merits of such a system which includes; Greater Access to Preventative Care, Fairer Coverage, Lower Costs and better health. If this system is implemented, it ensures that every citizen has a right to access preventive care no matter how rich or poor he is. Thus, health care availability should be addressed seriously with substantial actions and solutions. Some nations tend to focus on other key issues occurring in the present day such as environmental, economy and education overlooking the health care issue which should be considered as the first because it affects all the issues. Health care availability is very essential to all of us and should be given the first priority.