Quality Healthcare Term Paper

Pages: 4 (1506 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 0  ·  File: .docx  ·  Level: College Senior  ·  Topic: Disease

¶ … inequities of the American healthcare system are often discussed on state-wide or racial terms, pegging different demographics with either greatly heightened or slighted rates of care, but an important issue underlying the discussion is that of geographic location. Time and again, empirical evidence supports the theory that socioeconomic status has great baring on the provision of quality healthcare to patients, and while this is, in many cases, a problem that spans the black-white divide in America, it also addresses the wide chasm between the healthcare one can receive in an urban setting and that which is available to the bucolic.

Among the many issues plaguing the rural communities of America are the ever-growing crises with access to quality mental health care and the increasing concern over high rates of AIDS/HIV.

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The obvious causes of the disparate health care system in place in rural areas across America are linked to lower levels of fiscal ability and lower incidence of access to hospitals, both of which are reasonable problems since the rural communities' lowered population net not only less communal ability to pay for a hospital, but a decreased need for the mass-care the healthcare industry prefers. However, an equally important but often under-examined cause of insufficient care is quite possibly the result of decreased education awareness. This plays itself out two fold: not only are the members of the community less like to produce doctors who might be inspired to serve the greater good, they are also likely to seek care. Although not a rule, physicians do generally come from middle- and upper-class families, a financial bubble that provides for the exceedingly high levels of expensive education required as part of the doctoral of medicine pursuit. Because rural areas are largely populated by farmers or those without the money to move to an urban locale, they are immediately cut out of this relation.

Term Paper on Quality Healthcare Assignment

Additionally, there is much public concern on behalf of the populus and its search of care; while anyone can notice a wheezing cough or a broken limb, understanding mental health is a completely different concept, particularly in recognition of its needs of treatment. Like many other homogenous communities, rural communities approach mental health care in a way unparalleled in the wide-spread, diverse urban communities with which we are familiar. In the United States, many rural communities center life around their church, encouraging their prayer for the stresses of their lives that lead to anxiety disorders and even depression; this is particularly true in working Hispanic communities in the rural United States. Educating about mental health is the key to addressing the systematic problem; if people understand that mental health is a scientific certainty, that everyday stresses may cause chemical disorders, and that treatment is available in all shapes and sizes, the first step to solving the problem is achieved.

The communal problem that infects rural areas with lack of knowledge about mental health care extends in its greatest form to children. Children in rural communities face the largest obstacles in obtaining the proper support services, due mostly to their cultural and geographic factors. When parents fail to understand the needs of their children, they are incapable of addressing the issues. The most viable form of advocacy for the mental health problem affecting rural communities is in facilitating educational outreach to children and their families, particularly in school, PTA, and church settings. Evidence-based practices, in their most empirically supported manner, are the best solution for the rural communities, particularly as integrated into a coherent setting with the social support systems already in place.

As research is beginning to support the conclusion that taking care of mental health in its nascent stages of problem decreases the ultimate need for more physical care, addressing the mental health concerns of a community with little or no access to quality health care is of the utmost importance; at the same time, filling the community with information about the problems that can arise in high-stress lifestyles, particularly those associated with land-oriented professions at the whims of nature, and the psychological effects they might have is critical. Education, key to starting positive treatment for rural mental health, is critical to the development of good systems that can address the growing concern for HIV / AIDS. According to the National Rural Health Association, HIV / AIDS has a growing negative impact on the health of rural communities in America.

In the United States, 7.6% of all new cases reported last year of Human Immunodeficiency Virus infections were located in rural areas; significant, since less than 7.6% of the total population inhabit these areas. The troubling patters are uneven, and focus more on the south and minority-filled areas in particularly, suggesting an implicit need for demographic-oriented training and treatment. Southern States, the NRHA reports, have the largest burden of HIV / AIDS cases, where in the Southeast alone, over half of all rural aids cases are reported, far surpassing the proportion of the rural population to the non-rural. Additionally, the heightened numbers seem to be increasing steadily: in 1996, 59.6% of rural cases were in the Southeast, in 2001, this number had jumped to 70%. Community leaders, doctors, concerned citizens, and policy makers watch the Southeast with warnful eye, as the HIV / AIDS virus spreads through its land and people. These cases, particularly in Alabama, are correlated with extreme height to black women, demanding a need for knowledge and protection.

Many attribute these high levels of incidence to the spread of HIV among migrant and immigrant labor communities in the South, including many who cross the border with Mexico on a regular basis. Additionally, increased mobility in the population suggests the movement of the disease on a regular basis. Many associate the lack of care and knowledge of HIV with the stigma that surrounds it. In addition to lack of available medical facilities, patients with HIV are won't to reveal their disease to others, for fear of public ridicule. Unfortunately, a direct result of the deserved privacy is an increased spread; the NRHA extimates that nearly one third of those living with the disease in the Southeast are unaware and untreated.

Treating the spread of rural HIV / AIDS, which could be greatly decreased by increased input of knowledge and education, cannot be left to education alone. The patchwork of private and public system of care in the United States breaks down in the rural communities, where programs like Medicaid or state and local funding are likely to be the mainstay of insurance coverage for the population. Because small, fiscally-strapped local providers are left to treat those infected with the expensive drugs and time-requiring regimens, they are less likely to even be able to bare the burden of the needed care. The CDC has promoted a great number of problems that address the issue, but ultimately, the urban areas of the United States need to find a way to legislate care for the growing problem.

Education is key to treatment, particularly in rural communities. This is highlighted by the cases of mental health care and the spread of HIV / AIDS. With little knowledge of the science behind mental health and even less about how to seek, acquire, and maintain the proper sources of treatment for psychological issues, the mental health care problem in rural America is a growing concern. While educating rural populations about mental health care will ease the ever-increasing problem, educating about how HIV / AIDS is contracted and spread is equally important; yet, in the case of HIV / AIDS, just as important in spreading inter-communal knowledge about the virus is reaching out to urban populations and the large-scale public to bring into light the severity of the problem. These issues, emblematic of the problems facing the rural community, need… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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