What do the US and the UK Health Systems Have to Offer to Each Other?

The health care sectors around the world are suffering from increased demand, decreased resources and decreased man power. As the increase in the population as well as in the life expectancy occurs, the provision of care becomes all the more an acute problem.

Health care remains a problem even in the developed countries, and the lack of insurance accounts for the major reason why patients are not able to reach health care.

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The United States health sector still suffers from many problems despite the numerous efforts and the generous spending that it receives. The issue is not about the cost in this case, but the allocation and proper utilization of the resources.

The US health care sector is the best financed with the best resources at hand. The insured Americans are given the best health care services in the world. Despite this, the other side of the coin is the increase in the number of people who are uninsured and suffer from fear of falling sick.

Lack of insurance may deny these people access to basic health care facilities, meaning the over 45 million Americans have been denied access to the health care system. This is especially true for the unemployed and the children. Lack of basic life support to these people seriously questions the adequacy of the health care system in the developed world.

Comparing with other developed nations of the world, the United States health care system fails at some points. The lack of hybrid system that has been so successfully implemented in these countries that now public and private sectors both work along side to provide with financing to the health care. (Health Care Systems, pp. 2) There are many examples of countries with hybrid systems and include Australia, Canada, Denmark, Sweden, Norway and Japan among the few.

(Health Care Systems, pp. 2) All of these countries are ranked some of the best health care services providers. These include both the public as well as the private sectors of health. Public health care sectors however still remain the main body of health care provision in these countries. (Health Care Systems, pp 3)

The introduction of public funding of the health care with the population with public insurance is another reason why these countries are enjoying good heath care provision. (Health Care Systems, pp. 4) The trends were visible as early as 1997, when public insurance in many countries mentioned were as high as 100%.

(Health Care Systems, pp. 4) This is in comparison to the United States that only had 45% of its population that was publicly insured. The trends in the US health care sector are therefore, of a very long history. (Health Care Systems, pp 4) Public funding has been found to be more economical than private heath care, which is the reason why less than 10% of the UK population is currently taking private health care services.

The UK health care system is essentially a social welfare system, which is characterized by “market minimization and government ownership/control” (Hohman, pp 29). This system is predominantly public owned with providers as well as financing of public origin.

The low GDP percentage placed in the health sector accounts for the increased problems in funding. NHS is able to provide free health care services in many circumstances, as they are covered in the insurance. However, payment is required for procedures such as long term and private care, pharmaceuticals, dental care and eye services.

(Hohman, pp24)NHS although claims for a large list of services that are provided for free, it does not elaborate completely in this regard.  Due to the low funding, the UK health care system always suffered from long waiting lists. This is being reduced by the institution of trusts that will help tackle the number of patients, and provide them with speedy health care provision.

The introduction of primary care and community health care services is among the many initiatives that NHS has carried out to improve its health care delivery. Another looming problem that the NHS is facing is the continued disparity between the high and low class of individuals that receive health care.

While this is still to a lesser extent than seen in the United States, it is nevertheless a concern that policy makers are working hard in reducing. (Hohman, pp 26) Poor populations are not able to receive the quality of care that the rich populations are receiving which is raising concern about the divide of the patients due to their social standing.