Process Reflection

Being from a different country I had very limited information about the US healthcare system. Before taking this class all I knew was that the number of successful treatments for cancer, heart disease, and other similar illnesses was very high. I was very confused during the first lecture when Professor Guseva mentioned that the healthcare system in the US is very flawed. Continue reading “Process Reflection”


How can applying the motives of hospice care to other medical settings improve the quality of healthcare?

End of life care provides personalized care to dying patients. The main goal of hospice care is to give the patients a sense of dignity and respect their requests. Listening to the patient’s final wishes builds a supportive environment not only for the patient, but also for their family. After all, everyone deserves to be treated as a human being when dying. Continue reading “How can applying the motives of hospice care to other medical settings improve the quality of healthcare?”

Why are nursing homes expensive?

As discussed in lecture the cost of nursing homes exceeds college tuition. Older people end up spending their assets to afford living a long-term care facility. Semi-private rooms are also costly, therefore sharing a room with someone doesn’t really help to lower the amount that has to be paid. On the other hand, the staff working there is also not earning much. Nursing assistants work on minimum wage. Some work two shifts in a row and sometimes in different facilities. So where does all the money go? Is it the food? I worked at a nursing home over the summer and from what I saw the food wasn’t very appetizing.  The elderly staying there paid $8000 a month. Is it the administrative costs? Where is all the money going then? Only after answering these questions and understanding the reason behind the costs we might be able to solve the Long Term Care Crisis.

Rise in Early Cervical Cancer Detection Is Linked to Affordable Care Act

Earlier in the semester we watched a documentary about how health care coverage varied based on age. The highest rate of uninsured Americans were between the ages of 18 to 25. Most were unable to afford healthcare because they didn’t have access to employer-based health plan and were not covered by their parents’ health insurance. Health and finances of young Americans were at risk. In 2010, the provision of the Affordable Care Act allowed young adults to stay on their parents’ insurance until the age of 26. The number of uninsured adults in this age group declined significantly.

Continue reading “Rise in Early Cervical Cancer Detection Is Linked to Affordable Care Act”

What is a potential solution that can induce the recognition of nurses for their hard work?

In Chapter 12 Weitz mentions how nurses struggle with asserting their professional status. In the doctor-nurse game nurses subtly help inexperienced doctors to provide care. In one case the physician got credit even though the nurse was the one who saved a patient’s live. Despite the fact that nurses have extensive experience in the field, medical students have a higher status because of their education level. It is clear that this situation is caused by medical dominance, which prevents nurses from gaining autonomy and higher status. What is a potential solution that can induce the recognition of nurses for their hard work?

Could native-born Americans be more powerful allies in reforming access to better health?

In “Understanding Racial ethnic Disparities in Health” Williams and Sternthal argue that more policies are needed to improve the health of the minority population. The article blames racial discrimination and low-quality living conditions for declining health in vulnerable social groups. While reading the article I realized that a similar event took place in the 20th century when Blue Cross presented itself as the best alternative to national health insurance. This undercut the middle class concern for health access equality. As stated in Rothman’s article at that time it would require empathy for the middle class to push for national health insurance. Are we experiencing a similar situation here? Is it the majority group, native-born Americans, to blame for not pushing for equality in living conditions, access to education, SES, and most importantly health? Could they be more powerful allies in reforming the system?

Medicaid Costs Rise, but Some States Are Spared

Medicaid is jointly financed by state and federal funds. Although the federal government covers vast majority of the cost state officials complain that they spend most of their budget on Medicaid. Based on a recent report Medicaid spending has increased by 14%. This is a result of newly eligible enrollees. However, federal funds covered all additional spending. National Medicaid enrollment climbed 13.8% resulting in an increase in spending on the program. Continue reading “Medicaid Costs Rise, but Some States Are Spared”

Would the United States still experience the same social inequalities if it was a smaller country?

In the first documentary it was mentioned that the social inequalities lead to lower health outcomes. People with low-income live in poor conditions and therefore have lower health outcomes. This can be prevented in the European countries by overcoming wealth inequality. However, European countries are smaller in size compared to the United States. I think the main problem here is having to control such a widespread population. If the United States approaches the problem the same way other industrialized countries do, the outcome may not be successful. So how can the United States control social inequalities more efficiently considering that the complication has to be solved on many different federal levels?

What are some steps that can be taken to make both the caregivers and patients benefit?

The video presented in class showed that there is no perfect health care system, that each has its own pros and con. In Japan for example, the patients don’t pay much at all, only $10 for a night at the hospital. However, this causes hospitals to lose resources. In Germany doctors don’t get paid enough for their work. If the providers are better off then that means that the patients are worse off, like in the United States. In Japan and Germany, patients are better off, while hospitals and doctors are the ones suffering from the system. What are some steps that can be taken to make both the caregivers and patients benefit?

“Harvard Medical School revamps curriculum”

I came across Harvard Medical School revamps curriculum on the Boston Globe website. This article reminded me of the topic we touched based on during the first week of classes.

Medical schools require applicants to have a background in clinical settings. Many pre-medical students volunteer at hospitals or at health care facilities to meet this requirement. However, in medical schools clinical rotations don’t start until the third year. I support the idea that future doctors will benefit from being exposed to the medical field earlier in their career.

There are main reason why Harvard University decided to update their curriculum is modern technology.The changes at Harvard Medical School mirrors a wider movement to shift methods that have been used for a century.” Continue reading ““Harvard Medical School revamps curriculum””