Public health is synonymous with community health as the two encompasses similar aspects, process and tenets. Protecting the health of the general population is the concern of public health. Implementation of health and education programs, conducting of research and recommendation of health policies are ways in which public health ensures prevention of health problems, their recurrence and amelioration of population’s health.
The term health care disparity refers to the difference in disease presence, health outcomes, health care quality and access to health care services existing among distinct population segments. These differences are due to gender, race or ethnicity, education economic status, disability, or geographical location. Healthcare disparity represents inadequate efficiency within health care system and, therefore, results to unnecessary expenditure (Johnson & Stoskopf, 2010). Factors contributing to racial, ethical and social economical health care disparity include; inadequate health care access, low health care quality, community characteristics such as poverty, war or violence and personal attributes. The paper analyses the healthcare disparities between the United States and Nigeria.
Population between the two countries
World population distribution and growth is uneven when it comes to individual countries as some places in a country such as are considered rural and unfit for human habitation and are sparsely populated and the growth rate is low, while the rest are more metropolitan and are compactly populated with a high growth rate. The population growth and distribution greatly depends on the economic undertakings of the individuals living in a certain country and the availability of social amenities like health.
Population growth or decline is affected by the rates of birth, migration, death and the life expectancy rates today worldwide, birthrates and death rates are o a decline due to the health care systems being advocated. However, more births are occurring compared to deaths thus increasing the populations between the US and Nigeria. The population growth rate in the US in 2011 was 0.93% while, in Nigeria, it was 1.93%. This means that, by 2050, the Nigerian population will surpass the US population. The Nigerian population as of 2012 was 166.2 million. The death rates in US are low as compared to Nigeria meaning that the US health care systems are far better than Nigeria’s. Nigeria has a high mortality and high birthrates than the US but their health systems are poor.
The infant mortality rate in Nigeria as of 2008 was 90 per 1000 live births. The childhood mortality rate was 189 per 100 children between 1-5 years. The maternal mortality rate is 8 per 1000 mothers. The death rate in Nigeria is 18 per 100 populations while the life expectancy at birth is 47 years. The population growth rate is 3.2% while the total fertility rate is 5.4. The HIV prevalence is 4.4%. There are over one million children orphaned because of AIDs. Nigeria has the highest populace in Africa and is the most blessed with oil production. Nonetheless, it is one of the most underprivileged with more than 70% of Nigerians living below the poverty line. The level of poverty impairs the ability of the majority to afford healthcare. In Nigeria, access to quality healthcare is dictated by the ability to pay making it hard for many to be unable to engage in the kinds of preventive medicines.
United States Healthcare System
Although there are mortality rates in the US, they are not high as compared to Nigeria. U.S. has been a leader in technology and innovation for long durations, and it is no wonder that their healthcare system is advanced. They had the highest health spending as compared to any other country in, utilizing a 15.3% share of GDP (Gross Domestic Product) and per capita expenditures on health are the highest. Most of this money is spent on pharmaceutical purchase although this does not increase the life expectancy rate. The US government provides for free treatment of patients in emergency rooms and provision of care by them regardless of the status of the patient in terms of whether they have health insurance or not.
The US population has been greatly burdened in terms of taxation in order to cater for the Medicare plan. This is attributed to the rising number of people beyond 65 years, a reduced birth rate and a low employment ratio compared to the unemployed. States are also bestowed with the responsibility of assisting the unemployed, those with little incomes, women and children and the elderly and disabled pay for their healthcare (Holtz, 2008). The US government provides for free treatment of patients in emergency rooms and provision of care by them regardless of the status of the patient in terms of whether they have health insurance or not.
Health care system is revolving in a number of ways especially in the United States.. Population health management trend is one of the technological trends that have caught the attention of many in the health industry (Lloyd, 2004). The Affordable Care Act popularly referred to as Obama care is a legislation that was passed to provide Americans with a comprehensive health security by enabling broad health insurance reforms that will result in: expanding coverage, ensuring that insurance companies are accountable, lower the cost of healthcare, avail more choice, and improve the quality of care for all citizens.
The demographic differences between the two countries are reflected in the way healthcare is provided in the countries. As discussed above the levels of poverty between the counties is the major determining factor as far as healthcare is concerned. The health care cost being very expensive is turning to be unaffordable for uninsured people. The quality of the health cares for uninsured people still lags behinds. Uninsured people get inefficient and unnecessary medical services. The quality of health care the two countries for uninsured people is wanting especially regarding on how the chronic diseases are being handled, patients with chronic ailments such as heart disease, hypertension and diabetes usually often do not receive proven and effective treatment such as drug therapy, or self management services to help them more effectively to manage their worse conditions.
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