Improving the American Healthcare System

Healthy People 2020 initiative offers scientifically based national objectives to improve the American healthcare system. One of the goals of the initiative is to bring into play health communication strategies and information systems with the aim of achieving health equity and boosting the character and outcome of health care in communities. As noted on its website, the initiative aims at improving the effective use of health information systems by healthcare and public health professionals (Health Communication and Health Information Technology, n.d.). In addition, the use of technologically advanced health information systems helps professionals to distinguish risk factors linked to illnesses and improve communication during health care provision (Nies & McEwen, 2011).

According to Nies & McEwen (2011), health promotion and risk reduction are fundamental in the advancement of public and community wellness. In order to improve the implementation of communication between patients and health care providers, I would adopt the use of nursing informatics when documenting and assessing patients. Instead of handwriting notes into charts and pieces of paper, I would record notes using available computers and other instruments. Therefore, nursing informatics would help me increase the accuracy of documentation and enable me to analyze clinical information with ease.

Health promotion displays possible strategies that serve to identify risk factors for illnesses (Nies & McEwen, 2011). In order to improve health care, I would coordinate health promotion workshops that aim at sensitizing the public about electronic health records and ways of accessing health information online. In addition, I would ensure that all my patients understand the importance of e-health systems and have electronic health records that can be easily accessed from diverse locations.

A number of social factors are believed to affect the health of human beings. As noted by the Healthy People 2020 initiative’s website, “access to health services and the quality of health services can impact health” (Determinants of Health, n.d., para. 11). Similarly, the New York state department of health website notes that access to quality health care eliminates potential health disparities and increases the quality of life. In addition, the less fortunate and minority communities are less likely to receive medical care due to high costs and inaccessibility of health care organizations (Priority Area: Access to Quality Health Care., n.d.).

Consequently, strategies aimed at transforming healthcare provision through arrangements that permit patients to pay less for health care have been adopted. In order to protect the access to health services and quality of health services offered in all healthcare organizations, the U.S patient protection and affordable law have standardized mechanisms that emphasize improved and effective health maintenance practices. According to the law, US healthcare systems should utilize all the available resources to ensure that quality and professional healthcare is available to all people at affordable prices (Pool, 2010).

A report by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality indicates that insured healthcare systems do not cover all parts of the population, leading to poor access to health care that becomes both personal and societal cost (Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, 2011). As a result, infectious diseases that may have been controlled through vaccination may spread to communities, creating a burden of disease for society and individuals. As noted by Nies & McEwen (2011), health policies should have a “social justice” approach that promotes health for everyone. As a result, members of the community, regardless of their social or financial status, should be able to access standard health care.

References

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. ( 2011). National Healthcare Quality Report, 2011, Chapter 9. Access to Health Care. Web.

Determinants of Health. (n.d.). Web.

Health Communication and Health Information Technology. (n.d.). Web.

Nies, A., & McEwen, M. (2011). Community/Public health nursing: Promoting the health of populations (5th ed.). St. Louis, MO: Saunders/Elsevier.

Pool, G. (2010). After PPACA: The Future of the Health Insurance Underwriter: Insurance news & sales ideas for life & health insurance professionals. Web.

Priority Area: Access to Quality Health Care. (n.d.). Web.

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