Concerns on Access to health Services\

The “Healthy People 2020” identifies as federal government prevention agenda that is aligned with ensuring attainment of high standards in health. In relation to its provisions, the most significant preventable threats to health are identified and used as the basis to set the national goals in curbing the same threats. The understanding herein is that by 2020 the society will have attained a status where all people are healthy and live longer. The plan has at least 42 topic areas with each describing a significant health issue in the US. In this case, the health concern is access to health services by the people of Tampa, Florida. In the previous study, it entailed a comprehensive analysis of the attributes of people living in this region as a community. The key goal of this Healthy People 2020 topic is to improve access to comprehensive and quality health care services. Access to health services is essential in endorsing and upholding health, preventing and managing diseases, reducing unnecessary premature death and disability and attaining health equity for all. In this paper, the issue of access to health services for the Tampa community will be analyzed in line with the timeliness of care, health services, and insurance coverage. 

Similarities and differences between data gathered and data generated

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In relation to the issue of access to health services three key issues are identified. These are timeliness of care, health services, and insurance coverage. The three issues as manifested in various resources similarly apply in the case of Tampa. The US federal government is the leading world in health expenditure per person, however, the access to quality and affordable care services remains a challenge (Obama, 2016). A major drawback herein is the lack of health insurance coverage hence, inability to access quality health care services. In the US it is estimated that close to 30 million Americans have no health insurance. There are various reasons why people do not seek health insurance and the same reasons are evident in Tampa.  The leading reason is poverty whereby most people who are uninsured are from low-income families. In families where none is working or at least one person is working it is challenging to seek for coverage. The coverage cost of health insurance coverage in most cases is high hence discouraging coverage. 

Unlike most parts in the US, the health sector in Tampa identifies as one of the leading areas of employment. The health and social assistance employ 15% of the residents which is a significant part of the population. The implication in this is that there are numerous care centers considering the clinician and patient rate is 1.73. However, there is the issue of access to a significant portion of the population. The profit motive in the US health care system has made it very costly to achieve case services, as such this is not a basic human right as it is rather one requires to pay highly for the services. The results to this are that the vulnerable groups which are the elderly, children, racial and ethnic minorities, chronically ill and the poor are suffering the most (Stoddart & Evans, 2017). The studies related to the pointed disparities and with the improvement of health care access have identified the following solutions. The entry into the care system through insurance coverage, providing numerous care centers and improvement of patient and care provider trust. However, achieving this is not easy when both the cost and rate of unemployment are high. 

The general barriers to access health care services identified as cost, inadequate or lack of insurance coverage, lack of services and lack of culturally competent care. The recorded data identifies the four nationally recognized barriers to be paramount in Tampa. However, the data generated in the region indicates the cost of care and lack of insurance coverage as the leading challenges. Poverty in this area is a major issue and is experienced by people of all races. Those who live below the poverty line are homeless and a significant number live in public housing which are in poor conditions increasing the health risk. The issue of health risk factors creates the imbalance between the large health and social care sector with the general health of the people. Take, for instance, the consumption, access to clean water and quality food are a major issue which then hinders the ability of the poor to live healthy long lives. Generally, it is understood that there are high chances of adults being uninsured as compared to adults. In the case of Tampa, the data indicates a huge discrepancy in this matter because the number of children living in poor families is 18% Asian, 29% Hispanic and 49% black. 

Strengths and weaknesses of the community

The Tampa community has various advantages that with proper planning and policies the issue of access to health care services could be curbed. To begin with, Tampa is the third largest city in Florida where being a harbor and close to other dominant places such as Miami increases its chances of development. It is a diverse region which only calls for bringing the people together so they can cohesively address the issues that they face. There are both blue- and white-collar jobs in the community who with proper motivation and drive could drive the area into achieving significant growth. If a proper working economic block is to be established in Tampa through increased employment and proper salaries the community will be in a position to address the issue of poverty. The other strength of this community is the employment of health practitioners and the availability of health centers (Bolin et al, 2015). The issue of access has been addressed by ensuring that health and social assistance is one of the dominant industries. Also, the health practitioners are some of the people who get high remunerations. The implication in this is that the region has established a strong basis when it comes to delivery of care basis. 

In the case of weaknesses, the general access to health care services by the community is significantly low. The issue of poverty in the community is a major drawback to the improvement of health. The reason for the high poverty level is the unemployment rate. It is noted that in a population of 3.03 million residents only 1.38 that is employed; hence a huge portion of the population that faces significant difficulties in meeting their needs. The issue of lack of insurance coverage especially to the aged people is a major weakness for people in this community. The national rate of uninsured population is 14% while that of Tampa is 17% which is significantly higher for a single area (Berge et al, 2018). It is an indication that this area is not doing well as low-income residents find it challenging to access health care. Subject to these people have unmet health needs, delays in receiving suitable care, they are unable to get preventive services and most have financial burdens. 

Additionally, there is the issue of homelessness because it associated with many health problems and risks. It is noted that those who live below the poverty line stay in public housing and others in the streets. In such living conditions, mothers and children are the most susceptible to diseases and other health issues. Illnesses such as bronchial infections, malnutrition, conjunctivitis, pneumonia, and asthma frequently face homeless people. Additionally, infectious diseases such as HIV, tuberculosis and sexually transmitted diseases are prevalent to them. Children living in poor conditions are vulnerable to development delays and face high rates of chronic and acute health issues. The other weakness is the birthrate of teen mothers in Tampa estimated to be 3%. It is toed to the cases of babies being born at low birth weight and having other health complications. The community is characterized by a significant portion of aging adults and it is important to identify the connection between age and health problems (Kihlström et al, 2018). The issue herein is that majority of this aging individuals are uninsured and poor thus they are unable to access quality care services. Also, it is important to consider that the majority of aged people tend to suffer from chronic diseases and most cannot to pay for care services. 

Areas of improvement needed

The first area of improvement is employment through the creation of job opportunities. There is a huge unproportionate rate whereby more than 60% of the population is unemployed. The implication in this is more than 20% live below the poverty line. Secondly, the rate of medical insurance or cover where more people should be brought under the coverage. The aspect of the high employment rate would mean more people will be able to afford the cover rates (Devaux, 2015). Also, reducing the rates of insurance coverage and medical bills could play an important role in improving the general access to healthcare. It can be done by the local government taking the initiative to provide quality and affordable care services in public health facilities. The element of profit in health services should be eliminated by looking at it as a human basic need and the government taking another approach in the matter.

Furthermore, the issue of housing and the provision of water and food products should be improved. In the above analysis poor housing has been tied to numerous health problems to individuals and society in general. Ensuring that there is access to clean water and healthy food for all is a suitable strategy in preventing health problems (Neumann et al, 2016). Also, there is an improvement in education through reducing costs of education and encouraging children to go to school. The issue of teen pregnancies has been noted to be a major hindrance to the improvement of health in the region. There is a connection in this with most teens not seeking education.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the analysis identifies that access to health care services is a vital topic with regards to the health of people. The major hindrances to access are high costs of care services and inadequate or no insurance coverage. Increasing the coverage of Medicaid and Medicare especially to the adults would pray an important role in improving access to this group. While the government continues to spend millions per person in health services this could be effective if it could manage to bring the health care costs down. It can be done by the government owning this sector through adequate investment in public health facilities and health practitioners. There is significant potential in Tampa to improve the general health if the economic conditions of the people can be uplifted.

References

Berge, J. M., Fertig, A., Tate, A., Trofholz, A., & Neumark-Sztainer, D. (2018). Who is meeting the Healthy People 2020 objectives?: Comparisons between racially/ethnically diverse and immigrant children and adults. Families, Systems, & Health, 36(4), 451.

Bolin, J. N., Bellamy, G. R., Ferdinand, A. O., Vuong, A. M., Kash, B. A., Schulze, A., & Helduser, J. W. (2015). Rural healthy people 2020: new decade, same challenges. The Journal of Rural Health, 31(3), 326-333.

Devaux, M. (2015). Income-related inequalities and inequities in health care services utilization in 18 selected OECD countries. The European Journal of Health Economics, 16(1), 21-33.

Kihlström, L., Burris, M., Dobbins, J., McGrath, E., Renda, A., Cordier, T., … & Himmelgreen, D. (2018). Food Insecurity and Health-Related Quality of Life: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of Older Adults in Florida, US. Ecology of food and nutrition, 1-21.

Neumann, P. J., Farquhar, M., Wilkinson, C. L., Lowry, M., & Gold, M. (2016). Lack of cost-effectiveness analyses to address healthy people 2020 priority areas. American journal of public health, 106(12), 2205-2207.

Obama, B. (2016). The United States health care reform: progress to date and next steps. Jama, 316(5), 525-532.

Stoddart, G. L., & Evans, R. G. (2017). Producing health, consuming health care. Why are some people healthy and others not? (pp. 27-64). Routledge.

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