The Community as a Healthcare Client

The health of the community as a healthcare client is an important indicator of care outcomes. Healthcare providers recognize this fact and call for mutual collaboration in developing healthcare programs and achieving their objections. This paper aims to discuss the core competencies of the community as a healthcare client.

The Core Characteristics of the Community as a Healthcare Client

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The term “community” refers to a group of people who are linked by the geographical location, share common interests and perspectives, and engage in the same activity (Kulbok, Thatcher, Park, & Meszaros, 2012). As a rule, the community is identified by its core elements, such as social ties, sharing, locus, joint action, and diversity (Kulbok et al., 2012).

They help healthcare providers validate their effectiveness or ineffectiveness in reaching community-level health objectives. Being an important determinant of public health and its outcomes, the community plays an important role in society. According to Lafortune, Huson, Santi, and Stolee (2015), a community-oriented approach is expressed in the accessibility to healthcare, interpersonal relations among its members, amenities, and the technical competence. As a rule, the quality of healthcare in the community depends on doctor-patient collaboration, healthcare programs, confidentiality, and the ability of community members to be informed about their diseases and possible outcomes.

 As a healthcare client, the community requires equal rights to all its members regardless of their gender, race, sexual orientations, and so on. The literature reveals that the core objective of healthcare providers is to provide quality healthcare, taking into consideration community’s needs, location and availability of health facilities, common requirements, and current practices (Lafortune et al., 2015). One of the major dimensions of the community is its accessibility to healthcare services that differ in accordance with the socioeconomic status of its members. Unfortunately, some communities have more abilities to receive timely care than others. However, the government tends to meet communities’ needs, providing affordable healthcare programs. For example, the Affordable Health Care Act gives an opportunity to access more options for people with low income.

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The Core Healthcare Strategies

Communities vary from each other in many aspects, but all of them seek for quality healthcare services that can satisfy their needs. Kulbok et al. (2012) suggest that a community needs similar healthcare services as individual clients such as education, prevention, intervention, control, and more. Nowadays, healthcare officials try to implement effective strategies that can eliminate social challenges faced by community members. For instance, providing specific test vaccines, such as HIV, healthcare providers encourage local people to support their initiatives. Therefore, effective strategies ensure that the community actively participates in immunization programs. Oftentimes, collaborating with it, healthcare professionals use in-depth, face-to-face and open-ended interviews that allow them to identify community’s problems and preferences. Therefore, collaboration plays an important role in the  well-being and long-term outcomes of this healthcare client.

Many researchers argue that social ties, action, and locus are the leading elements in the definition of the community (Lafortune et al., 2015). However, empirical data show that in order to achieve success, healthcare providers should consider the diversity of people within the community to function in accordance with the needs of the respective groups (Kulbok et al., 2012). Furthermore, the effectiveness of healthcare depends on education, clear instructions related to medication and treatment, preventive measures, and other activities. Therefore, the major element of the successful provision of healthcare services to the community is the competency of healthcare providers and their ability to maintain easy access to healthcare.

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Thus, the community is a healthcare client because it requires the same services as every individual patient. Its specificity is determined by social ties, sharing, locus, joint action, and diversity. Healthcare providers should consider these elements and understand the scope of their practice providing healthcare services to the community.

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