Post an explanation of what you believe to be the three most important healthcare financing concerns in the United States today. Be specific and provide examples. Then, explain how these three concerns relate to fundamental economic issues, such as “price,” “supply vs. demand,” etc. WRITE A RESPONSE
Week Three Discussion
One of our country’s main goals for the medical industry has been to achieve universal healthcare for all. While we continue to develop initiatives aimed at meeting this goal, the costs to obtain it still remains an issue. The purpose of this discussion is to describe three healthcare finance concerns and how they relate to fundamental economic issues as well as how it relates to my proposed solution of implementing PrEP to enhance patient care.
One of the major concerns affecting healthcare financing is the nursing shortage, and with the public health crisis that Covid-19 caused, it has become even more critical. In order to keep up with the healthcare demands of the population, organizations must have an adequate supply of nurses to care for them. Nursing shortages have been linked to adverse patient outcomes, accruing unnecessary healthcare costs (Ross, 2022). Additionally, costs associated with hiring and training nurses increase when retention is lacking. As a nurse providing care in a public health department, we are constantly faced with a staffing shortage, mainly the nursing staff. The longevity of this issue could strain on the proposition I suggested implementing PrEP, an oral antiretroviral medication that reduces a patient’s chances of contracting human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). The costs associated with training the nursing staff on this medication regimen are crucial to implementing this program. With burnout being more prominent than ever, these costs could add up, depending on how many new nurses are hired.
The costs of healthcare associated with advancing age and chronic co-morbidities are substantial when concerns about healthcare financing arise. As these patients are more prone to seek healthcare services due to their medical conditions, costs rise to meet supply and demand. Although Medicare is provided to the elderly, coverage is limited due to cost sharing. For this reason, deductibles, copayments, and medical visits not covered by insurance are unpaid, and some forgo medical treatment until it is inevitable, adding to the unsustainable amount spent on healthcare (Choi and DiNitto, 2016). Transitioning to a system that focuses on value rather than volume has been an ongoing initiative, as chronic health conditions are inevitable in an aging population.
Prescription drug prices are another concern when it comes to healthcare finance. According to Iacocca and Vallen, drug prices are now well over the cost of inflation and continue to rise (2021). This is alarming because patients living with chronic illnesses that require medication could be faced with paying a substantial copayment depending on their level of coverage. In terms of supply and demand, costs could fluctuate based on how many version of the medication exists on the market and if they are brand or generic. With medication costs being a healthcare financing concern, my suggestion of implementing PrEP could be hindered by this, depending on the price of the medication.
Choi, N. G., & DiNitto, D. M. (2016). Correlates of worry about health care costs among older
adults. Journal of Applied Gerontology, 37(6), 763-782. https://doi.org/10.1177/0733464816650803
Iacocca, K., & Vallen, B. (2021). Using analytics to gain insights on U. S. prescription drug
prices: An inductive analysis. Journal of Public Policy & Marketing, 40(4), 538-557.
Ross, J. (2022). Nursing shortage creating patient safety concerns. Journal of PeriAnesthesia
Nursing, 37(4), 565-567. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jopan.2022.05.078