Access to Care, Cost of Care, and Quality of Care – Health System Example

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"Access to Care, Cost of Care, and Quality of Care" is a great example of a paper on the health system. The dynamics in health provision have greatly changed as seen in the work of Boyer & Lutfey (2010). This is in line with the critical health policy issues that have been put in place to improve the health outcomes of patients. These changes have been indicated to be vital in healthcare delivery (Longest, 2010). Nevertheless, it is imperative to note that these critical policy issues have solely focused on the access, quality, and cost of care to US citizens (Iglehart, 2010a).

This results from the fact that a lot of Americans trust that they have the right to access quality care in spite of their financial capabilities. Access to Care, Cost of Care and Quality of Care -The Critical Policy Issues                       Eradication of the disparities that focus on the health sector may only be abridged with an examination of the current health care scheme and the policies that form it. It is obvious other factors outside the health sector influence health care proviso.

This paper will center on the health policy modifications that touch on access to care, quality care, and the costs of health care in the USA. Access to health care                       Access to care is greatly correlated to the principle of social justice according to Shi, Prof. Hopkins & Singh (2011). This principle argues that all people have the right to access medical care. This relates to the least level of care as well as an equal level of care. In this case, the providers of healthcare were expected to be equal in relation to patients in the country.

This as Goldman & McGlynn (2005) argue is useful for the provision of health services to patients under the health insurance coverage. The same would not have been possible without an increase in physicians. The access was also to cater for the elderly populace, the minorities, persons with HIV/AIDS, access to care in the rural areas as well as access to care for the low-income mothers and children through public financing (Shi, Prof. Hopkins & Singh, 2011). Cost of Care                       In relation to costs, the government cannot detach itself from the budgeting process.

As indicated by the California HealthCare Foundation (2004a) and Schoen et al (2004), the issue of the cost of healthcare has been a government’ s agenda for the longest time. This is aimed at containing the costs that manage health care providers in the USA. So as to control the costs, Shi, Prof. Hopkins & Singh (2011) argue that the government was keen to come up with a Prospective Payment System that assessed the in and outpatient costs.

However, restricting the in-patient costs has been impossible as opposed to the out-patient costs. It is also worth noting that very little has been done in containing costs as direct control has proven extremely tasking in the USA (Shi, Prof. Hopkins & Singh, 2011). It is therefore recommended that public policies be enacted to enforce explicit rationing in the costs of healthcare in the US. Quality of Care                       As Iglehart (2010b) and Oberlander (2010) argue, the quality of health care is vital in any country that aims at reproducing healthy populations.

So as to have quality health care, the health policies focused on six major areas such safety of patients in the health facilities, provision of effective care, focus on the patients’ needs, culture, choices and social context, timeliness in service delivery to avoid delays, efficiency to minimize costs by reducing wastes for instance supplies and capital and lastly the equity principle that seeks equal service delivery to all races and ethnic groups (Shi, Prof. Hopkins & Singh, 2011; Blendon & Benson, 2001). Conclusion                       Conclusively, it is evident that the reforms experienced in the US healthcare system are as a result of the reforms enacted to suit the public interests.

It is these reforms that have led to the Affordable Care and the protection of patients’ rights. However, much can still be done in regard to cost, access, and quality of health care in the US.    


Blendon, R.J., & Benson, J. M. (2001). Americans’ Views on Health Policy: A Fifty-Year Historical Perspective. Health Affairs, 20(2):33–46.

Boyer, C. & Lutfey, K. (2010). Examining Critical Health Policy Issues within and beyond the Clinical Encounter Patient–Provider Relationships and Help-seeking Behaviors. Journal of Health and Social Behavior 51(1): supplS80-S93 doi: 10.1177/0022146510383489.

California HealthCare Foundation (2004a). Health Care Costs 101, Oakland: CA.

Goldman, D. & McGlynn, E. (2005). U.S. Health Care Facts about Cost, Access, and Quality. Santa Monica: The RAND Corporation.

Iglehart, J. (2010a). Health centers fill critical gap, enjoy support. Health Affairs, 29(3): 343-5.

Iglehart, J. (2010b). The end of the beginning: enactment of health reform. Health Affairs, 29(3): 758-9.

Longest, B. (2010). Health policy making in the United States. 5th ed. Ann Arbor, M.I: Health Administration Press.

Oberlander, J. (2010). Long time coming: Why health reform finally passed. Health Affairs, 29(6): 1112-6.

Schoen, C., Osborn, R., Huynh, T., Doty, M., Davis, K., Zapert, K. & Peugh, J. (2004). Primary Care and Health System Performance: Adults’ Experiences in Five Countries. Health Affairs W4:487–503.

Shi, L., Prof. Hopkins, J. & Singh, D. (2011). Delivering Health Care in America. New York: Jones & Bartlett Publishers.

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