Health care services provision for women is seen to be very key to having economically stable societies. The current policies are seen to provide insufficient health services to women. This touches mainly on the reproductive health care which happens to be the bulk of the health problems bedeviling women especially during the reproductive phase of their life.
All over the world, there have been ongoing campaigns to create awareness as far as health care provision for women is concerned. This is aimed at sensitizing all the stakeholders to consider revising the current policies and or introduce new policies which will be seen to give women more in terms of quality health services. This will be seen to broaden accessibility and improve the quality of these services. These should cover even the more contentious issues such as providing insurance coverage for women seeking abortion.
From time immemorial women have stood out to be the major consumers of health care services (Fenny et al, 2006). It is found that they not only seek for health care services for their own benefit, but also for the benefit of their family members. The bulk of their health needs is taken up by reproductive health needs. This forms the greater percentage of health problems that bedevil women (Colantonio A & Chan D. 2005).
It can also be seen that due to the nature of health problems affecting women, they require a more complex health care system than men. This makes women require very personalized and high quality health care services provision which will obviously require more in terms of meeting costs (Fenny et al, 2006).
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The other problem facing women in relation to their health needs is lack of accessibility. This is complicated further by the fact that women earn disproportionately lower income than their male counterparts. This happens despite the fact that women have greater responsibilities which often time require them to engage in gainful employment opportunities and at the same time do family work. This risk is further compounded by the fact that most women are not insured. This further increases the difficulty in accessing quality health services.
Because of the fact that women are loaded with their own needs in terms of their health and the probability of having responsibilities in the family, and at the same time their limited financial resources, they are therefore seen to require more than what is currently provided for them. The services offered by the current health care system, together with the founding policy mechanisms for these services should be urgently reviewed (Colantonio A & Chan D. 2005).
Many studies have been carried out by a number of researchers leading to several recent publications touching on the available health care service provision to women, and the inherent needs of an urgent address to the problems thereof (Fenny et al, 2006). There have been several evidence based systematic reviews which have included guidelines as part of interventional plans in the modern world to curb some of the problems affecting women and health services provision to them. This has motivated the quest for appropriate answers to the many questions relating to the high costs and the quality of health care services for women, and access to these services.
It is evident that relevant scientific studies are required in clinical care, policy formulation and resolution of disputes as far as health care provision for women is concerned. Such studies bring on board, trusted information by carefully obtaining, studying and applying the findings of such studies into clinical and management of policy issues with that respect (Colantonio A & Chan D. 2005).
Several stakeholders in the United States including clinicians, professionals, researchers and even the government are currently looking for more appropriate approaches to the provision of healthcare services to women and children. All the forms of such studies revolve around the evidences adduced, based on critical analyses leading to a better understanding of the knowledge gathered (Cineraria et al 2010).
History has it that since the early 1700s, studies have always been done even though they were not as refined as we see them today. Since the early 1970, these studies have since been refined to give a better and clearer picture of what could be going on in terms of health services provision for women (Davidic, 1998).
Policy formulation as far as health issues are concerned should be based on appropriate uses of the currently available knowledge and trends regarding the whole process of providing health care services of high quality to women (Davis, 2009). This should be adhered to, even in making health decision for individual patients (Cineraria et al 2010).
A researcher pointed out that the provision of health care services to women should be based on recognition of each patient's unique problems, constructing of well structured clinical questions based on a proper search of available medical literature to provide the most appropriate answers to the questions asked, and finally integrating all these facts in a contextual manner befitting the clinical circumstances in question (Fenny et al, 2006). All these are designed to provide valid, reliable reproducible, practically applicable and flexible criteria to be followed in improving the health standards of women (Colantonio A & Chan D. 2005).
Very recently there have been proposals to effect very significant changes to policies regarding health coverage for women (Clarke et al 2003). The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) are envisaged to expand access, coverage and broadening of health care benefits that women will receive (Clinical Policy Research November 2001). This has to include all the health care needs for women including even services geared towards covering abortion. The latter was however so contentious that it was considered a separate issue. This was later discussed under health care reforms (Cineraria et al 2010).
If ACA policy is fully implemented in 2014, the extent to which abortion can be covered will largely depend on other policies that will be enhanced at statal levels, combined with the choices that will be available for the envisaged consumers. This proposed major insurance coverage which will be seen to be very relevant for all the women during their reproductive phase in life. This will also review the current provisions by which both the federal and state laws governing the coverage of abortion. It will also be seen to modify the policy under reforms of health and discuss visible implications of all this legislation on the access to quality health care services to women, including coverage of abortion.
Other published works related to the health of women include the National Profile on Women and provision of health care. This national survey seeks to examine women in terms of their health status, costs of health care services, access to the services including prevention, insurance and role of women in health care provision for their families.
The data book on woman's health has also been published, giving updated information touching on health conditions affecting women, which would include reproductive heath, violence against women, mental health in women, and behavioral health (Davis et al, 2003). This also includes timely access to, and high affordable quality of services under health care provision for women. It is also found out that the accessibility of various procedures for abortion in the United States needs a lot or reviewing since it is wanting in many respects (Clarke et al 2003). This, it is proposed, should be reviewed both at federal and state levels. This is so, due to the availability of services and access to them (Davis et al, 2003).
The information on the way financing is done with in the private and public arenas is also contained herein.
Statement of the problem
Many studies as have already been in the above literature review point to the fact that women are underserviced as far as providing them with accessible and high quality medical care is concerned. The question that this research seeks to answer is whether or not it is true that women need to be given more in terms of health care provision. This will be based on the available resources confirming that women are indeed in dire need of better, more accessible and high quality health care services. Will there be any justification for revising the current policies to make room for this?
It is envisaged that this policy proposal is going to make far reaching changes to the coverage of health matters for women. It is expected to be widely expanded and the final health benefits broadened, so as to reach many more women across the board. Under this reform proposal, abortion services coverage will be sufficiently addressed once this policy proposal becomes effective (Cineraria et al 2010).
The extent to which the coverage of abortion services will have gone will be known as soon as the policy is operationalized. But in the general sense of it, it is hoped that many more women, even those that are found at the lower cadre as far as economic status is concerned, will be able to receive more health services of higher quality than they currently get.
Options for action
One of the modern interventional plans in managing the issues affecting the health of women in general will encompass two main modes of operation. These are lobbying the government and every other stake holder in public health services provision to adopt changes that have been proposed in the policy proposal. As it has been pointed out, women are under serviced, as far as health care services provision is concerned. The other methods include lobbying all the stake holders in the private sector to adopt these proposed changes. This might also have to make sure that access to insurance services at very concessioned fees. Across the world there are varied opinions which have led to different policies being formulated, touching on the health matters of women. One such idea is practiced in many developed countries including Canada and involves a method that brings about the partnership of public and privates stake holders. The government may be required to create laws that will ensure the fair practice by insurance companies so as to expand their coverage to women especially as far as their reproductive health matters are concerned.
Products offered in the health sector that are required in the provision of reproductive health service to women should be highly subsidized. This can be done only if the government and the private sector work together in public, private sector partnership. The government should ensure that thresholds are set, seeing to it that at least a particular number of women in any community where there are health or insurance services providers are either insured or put on Medicaid. This will be seen to reduce the risk that comes about due to limited access to timely and high quality health services.
Criteria for evaluation of options
The options mentioned above are all very practical, and portend only good and health benefits for women. However a number of factors will need to be looked at in choosing which method is to be followed and how it is going to be. First, all stakeholders will have to be brought on board so that the process becomes an all inclusive one. A situation should not arise that other stakeholders are left behind since they may turn out to be stumbling blocks to the implantations of these far reaching changes. This is in the spirit or participatory development where each stakeholder feels that he or she is part and parcel of the whole process (Cineraria et al 2010).
Second, the burden of meeting the costs of implementation should be addressed. The question here is: who is going to meet the cost of implementing these reforms and propagating the ideals contained in them? Both the public and private providers of health care services touching on women should be able to cost share in this worthy course. The beneficiary, that is the women themselves, should not be left behind when seeking for the funders of this program (Clarke et al 2003). They should make their contributions, however little it may be, by regularly paying something towards a highly subsidized health insurance scheme.
Advantages and disadvantages of these options
The main advantage of all the options given above will be seen in what may be called a global awareness that has created the understanding that women need more than is currently offered to them in terms of health service provision. This will make it easier for all the stakeholders to agree on the need to widen these services, making them more accessible and of acceptably high quality, for the benefit of all women (Davidic, 1998).
The government has a realization that women carry a very high value in economic terms. The well being of women is the well being or the nation. If the economy of a nation relies on the well being of its citizens, then it portends well for the whole nation (Clarke et al 2003).
The private sector should also understand that it draws its strength from members of the public who are both its working force and also its clientele. In the spirit or corporate citizenship, the private sector is seen to be more than willing to make its contribution towards the realization of better health care services to women. This is seen as another major advantage.
If these women are not properly economically empowered, it might be as a major drawback to this process. This is so because they are also required to make their contribution and if they are not economically stable they will not make this contribution.thi is the main disadvantage.
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