How Does Free Healthcare Help the Poor?


Providing free healthcare to the poor is a great way to improve the health of people who are less fortunate. However, if there is not enough funding to provide for everyone's needs, there may be a lot of health problems left untreated.

Health is a right, not a privilege

Almost half of Americans do not consider health care a right. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was introduced to the US healthcare system, and raises the question of entitlement.

A right to health is a fundamental human right. It is defined in the World Health Organization constitution as enjoying the "highest attainable standard of health." The right to health is different from traditional civil and political rights. It includes health-related education, health care, and control of one's body. It also includes access to sexual and reproductive information, safe drinking water, and sanitation.

The right to health is protected by the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (ICESCR), which was ratified in 1966. Every state in the world is now a party to one or more human rights treaties.

Protecting people from the financial consequences of paying for health services out of their own pockets

Among the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), SDG 3.8 calls for the development of universal health coverage (UHC). UHC is an approach to health that ensures access to quality health services for all individuals and communities. It includes treatment, rehabilitation, and the prevention and treatment of disease. It also includes financial risk protection and access to safe essential medicines. Besides ensuring quality health services, UHC also helps improve health and reduce poverty.

One of the SDGs is to end poverty in all forms. Another is to ensure the right to education. The UHC concept is also an investment in human capital. This includes training and education of health workers.

The World Bank reports that people in developing countries spend over $100 per person on health services annually. This is more than half a trillion dollars per year.

Primary care teams are critical in the care of patients with low income

Increasingly, the focus of health care in the United States has moved from a fee-for-service model to a population-based approach. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) enables comprehensive care by redirecting health care spending to primary care. This shift will help reduce costs and improve the quality of care. However, existing market dynamics are severely constraining primary care's potential.

A key component of the ACA is the development of clinical data needed to enable coordinated care. This data will be made available to primary care teams in order to identify high-performing providers. However, in the past, the primary care workforce has not received sufficient payment to support team-based care. This creates a critical deficit in the care of patients with low income.

Currently, primary care physicians are paid less than specialists. This is a significant problem, given that primary care physicians are trained to treat undifferentiated patients. As a result, primary care physicians often collaborate with other health professionals. This collaboration allows them to serve as the first point of contact for a patient's health care needs. However, it also creates a burden for the primary care physician, who must pay for the support of the other providers on the team.

Pooling funds from compulsory funding sources can spread the financial risks of illness across a population

Having a large pool of prepaid funds to buy health care services for a group is one of the core functions of health financing policy. A well-designed and managed pool can have a positive impact on the health and economics of a nation. It also allows providers to invest in research and development.

A pooling scheme can be implemented by government or through private insurers. It can be accomplished through a single fund for the whole health system or through separate funds for different population groups. Typically, a pooling scheme is designed to mitigate risk and maximize efficiency. It involves contracts with providers and setting prices to pay for services.

The benefits of pooling can be realized through improved access to health care, improved health outcomes, and increased productivity. Using funds gathered at scale can be more effective than chasing individual claims. It also allows for more efficient use of scarce resources.

Strengthening health systems in all countries

Investing in strengthening health systems has long been seen as a vital tool to address the health challenges of developing countries. This is particularly true in relation to the high burden of disease in these countries. For example, the World Health Organization estimates that USD 370 billion a year is needed for universal health care in lower middle income countries.

However, the existing financing gaps challenge the UHC goal. These gaps are larger in developing countries.

Moreover, the rapid proliferation of NGOs has fragmented service delivery and increased management burdens for local authorities. This has led to the development of a "brain drain" in the public sector, which in turn has increased the number of workers who leave their jobs in the public sector to work for NGOs.