Impact of Socioeconomic & Sociopolitical Factors on Healthcare Finance & Nursing Practice.
Socioecomic factors that affect healthcare finance and nursing practice include consumers that are either classified as having low or moderate, as income is directly related to the ability to afford healthcare insurance. For many providers and healthcare organizations, the concern of consumers not being able to pay is considered as it is directly related to revenue and gain profits. Other socioeconomic factors that affect a consumer’s ability to afford healthcare or get healthcare is education, and occupation.
The difference in that of sociopolitical factors is that the government is involved regarding healthcare as in Medicare/Medicaid services that has guidelines set for the consumer on what care they can receive and whether or not they have certain coverage available to them for them to be able to receive healthcare. From a nursing perspective, I have witnessed patients who have Medicare/and Medicaid be denied services or healthcare because a provider refuses that type of insurance. The sociopolitical factor is a concern and it can be helpful for some consumers who have providers that accept and welcome government insurance, however, it can also be difficult to some who don’t have the means or resources to pay out of pocket or find other providers accepting insurance. For those who don’t have insurance at all, it can most definitely impact the member negatively especially if something happens, like an accident occurs where they will have to be hospitalized. Although knowledge indicates a crucial role for socioeconomic and related social factors in shaping health, healthcare finance is affected directly and nurses are seeing this in hospital reimbursement, when patients are denied extended stay due to lack of health insurance. Overall, we must take into account the effects of socioeconomic and sociopolitical factors that are “compelling that it cannot be ignored insofar as public health and health-care personnel are committed to health (Braveman & Gottlieb, 2014).
Braveman, P., & Gottlieb, L. (2014). The social determinants of health: it’s time to consider the causes of the causes. Public health reports (Washington, D.C. : 1974), 129 Suppl 2(Suppl 2), 19-31.
Both macroeconomic and microeconomic healthcare conditions impact the identified stakeholder. Let us consider the example of vaccinations. On a global scale, vaccination rates vary depending upon the financial resources and availability of the vaccines within a specific country. The microeconomic focus is that of health cost savings, whereas the macroeconomic focus is that of better health and an increase in the life expectancy of the residents which in turn promotes economic growth (Kotsopoulos & Connolly, 2014). Prior to going to nursing school, I was able to travel to India and was able to see the dichotomy between micro- and macroeconomics in action. The government understood the need for vaccinations within their country which would improve the overall health of the population and provide an additional workforce, however the caste system (which was still going strong) did not allow them to focus on providing vaccinations for everyone but rather only the upper financial stratus of the population.
This is really not different than our own health insurance availability and coverage. We as a nation, understand that providing healthcare for all citizens provides a healthy workforce. What we fail to understand is that this comes at a price that not everyone is willing or able to provide. I was talking to one of my students today and she stated that she works part time at a doctors office and due to the high cost of medications, the office provides samples of medications until they run out and discounts for their healthcare services. I believe this doctor is a rarity and that his understanding of the need for affordable healthcare in our population is priceless. As a DNP-prepared nurse, I will need to understand the ins and outs of healthcare costs and programs to are aimed at providing truly affordable health services and medications within my community in order to better serve our population.
Kotsopoulos, N., & Connolly, M. P. (2014). Is the gap between micro- and macroeconomic assessments in health care well understood? The case of vaccination and potential remedies. Journal of Market Access & Health Policy, 2, 1–N.PAG. https://doi-org.chamberlainuniversity.idm.oclc.org/10.3402/jmahp.v2.2389
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