Health Disparities

There is a clear explanation why health disparities should be eradicated not only in the United States but also in all the countries that is present in the world. The best quality of care that the people is should be receiving is not very satisfactory. This is because of the fact that there are factors that hinders a person from getting the optimum health and quality of care from the health care team. Many people are concerned about this, especially the US government that makes use of the experts to continuously research on how eliminate the health disparities and therefore improve the health care delivery system in the country.

In the United States, they exclusively use the term “health disparity”, while “health inequity” and “health inequality” are the terms that are commonly used outside the United States. Some dictionaries define health inequality as a “condition of being equal” or “lack of equality as of opportunity, treatment or status. ” According to the US government, health disparities are the persistent gaps between the health status of minorities and non-minorities in the United States.

Despite continued advances in health care and technology, racial and ethnic minorities continue to have more disease, disability, and premature death than non-minorities. The vulnerable populations in US are mainly affected with these health disparities. African Americans, Hispanics/Latinos, American Indians and Alaska Natives, Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders, have higher rates of infant mortality, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, HIV infection/AIDS, cancer, and lower rates of immunization and cancer screening.

The two major factors that influence it are inadequate access to care and substandard quality of care that is given to them. Many studies and programs were done and launched by the government to address the immediate concern and resolve the issue in terms of eliminating the health disparities which is very particular in the vulnerable populations. Body The health care setting is the best place to enumerate and identify if the health disparities are still present in this period. Several attempts were made by the government to decrease this issue but until now, it is still present and not declining.

It is because of the barriers that hinder the health disparities to be eliminated. These include lack of education, language, and cultural competence in health services. These barriers were seen in the workplace. Observations were done both in the health care provider and to the patient. Different patients were observed according to age, status in the community, financial capacity, race and ethnicity, language and knowledge to health care. The quality of care that was delivered to the patient was noted as well as the treatment may it be special or not was also noted.

The health care providers who deal with the patients were not aware that they are being observed to get the right result of their way of dealing with the patients when it comes to treatment and care. The data that was collected were evaluated and analyzed and seek for the presence of barriers that hinders the elimination of the health disparities. The vulnerable populations- those with major health problems and poor relationships to the health system- continue to experience serious disparities in health outcomes.

There is a decrease rate of access to health care because the vulnerable population, especially the US veterans are deprived of immediate and full access to optimum and quality health that was given by the health care providers. Secondly, the race of the patients also affects the care that was delivered by the health provider. Most of them are more focused in their same race or in white men where superiority is still present. Most of the team also prioritizes the patients who can pay in return of the care that will be given to them.

The clients who don’t have enough money and who are not insured were taken care less that the insured one. Only limited health care providers give importance and treat the patients equally. In addition, language barrier is present in the workplace. The patient and the health care providers were having a difficulty in terms of communication because of the patient’s race ant ethnicity which greatly affects the subjective data coming from the patient. Hence, proper information and documentation is affected because of incompleteness of data that was taken from the patient.

Moreover, the workplace also demonstrated that age also serves as a barrier in decreasing the health disparity. The elderly, especially the US veterans who are aged and disabled has developed diseases that has affected their conditions and made them act like a child has tested the patience and flexibility of the health care providers when it comes to dealing with the patient in terms of getting pertinent data and subjective data to assess and evaluate the condition of the patient was also affected.

As a result, the treatment and the outcome of the patient’s health are also affected. In response to these problems that were encountered in the workplace, an action plan was developed to help the government and the health care team to promote the health of the healthy people. The US government designed the Healthy People 2010 to achieve the two main goals of this program. The goals are to increase quality and years of healthy life and to eliminate health disparities.

The action plan that was made to address the concern is based in the program Healthy People 2010 and from the results of the observation and evaluation that was done in the work place. The title of the action plan is People Free from Health Disparities 2020. The main objective of this plan is to increase the awareness of the health care team and the people especially the vulnerable populations to help the government eliminate the health disparities.

The content of the action plan should include the following information that needs to be sent to the health care team and the vulnerable populations. They will be given brochures that are about increasing awareness of social and ethnic disparities in health care providers and by stake holders. In addition, the consistency and equity of the Evidenced Based Practice will also be quoted there to remind the health care providers in their responsibilities and scope of care.

It will also be discussed in the brochure the methods on how the patient and the health care team will interact when they are having a language barrier when it comes to communication with the patient such as getting an interpreter or making use of visual aids or a make use of languages that is within the level of the patient’s understanding. The importance of seeking health care will also be included in the brochure as well as the leading indicators of health needs to be addressed requiring to seek for the help of the health care team.

The Leading Health Indicators reflect the major health concerns in the United States. These indicators are physical activity, overweight and obesity, tobacco use, substance abuse, responsible sexual behavior, mental health, injury and violence, environmental quality, immunization and access to health care. With the information that will be included in the brochure the people and the health care providers can work hand on hand to achieve the goal of Healthy People 2010. Moreover, they will become aware in their responsibilities as a health care seeker and as a provider.

The action plan that will be listed in the brochure that will serve as a visual aids was done according to the patients understanding and will make use of the layman’s term instead of the medical terminologies that are used in the health care setting to provide better understanding and increase their participation to the program and future programs that will be implemented to address the problems in health disparities. Conclusion Eliminating the health care disparities that are present is not easy to make. Barriers that hinder its eradication have to be enumerated and analyzed before making some actions into it.

The US government has provided programs to achieve the goal of Healthy People 2010. And they are still making some revisions and additions to further get a good outcome of these projects. It takes time to get a positive outcome. Health care providers, the people especially the vulnerable populations and the government should work together in achieving these goals. Failure of once part in the society in practicing and doing their responsibility will lead to failure of these projects, thus, will not lessen the health disparities that were experienced by most of the vulnerable populations not only in the United States but in all the countries.

Therefore, it is further recommended that continuous research and follow up regarding this problem should be done. And the health care team should strengthen their campaign in eliminating the health disparities among the vulnerable populations.


http://govinfo. library. unt. edu http://www. ahrq. gov http://www. bartleby. com/61/ http://www. healthypeople. gov http://www. physiciansnews. com

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