Consumers’ role in the health care system essay sample

 

Speaking of the health care system, we define doctors and patients as two main subjects of these relations. However, we very seldom address patients as consumers. Despite health care providers supply services and are paid from their clients, patient’s role as a consumer who makes their own choices is very weak. We cannot fully approach the field of health care as a market. Naturally, relations in the free market are driven by consumer needs that define prices and offer. In the health care, however, consumers have little power. Employers pay for a limited range of healthcare plans that may more or less correspond to the demand of their employees. Sometimes, a healthcare insurance does not cover the most pressing services for individuals. For example, the health care law has only recently required insurance plans to cover birth control without a co-pay from the insured person. This step was a clear progress, but it is weird that for a long time consumers had to pay a lot of their own money to ensure such a basic health need.

Empowering consumers is an essential step to improve patient’s satisfaction with the healthcare services they get. Perhaps, employers should divide their insurance budget to pay for more diverse healthcare plans that correspond to the needs of their clients. The greater part of the money can be put into coverage of the most expensive emergency cases as usual, but the remaining part may go for individualized healthcare plans. A scheme like this one can provide consumers with some decision-making at the healthcare market.

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