Pivotal Events that Influenced the History of Healthcare Essay examples

Pivotal Events that Influenced the History of Healthcare Essay examples

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Many pivotal events over the last century have brought our healthcare system to where it is today. Some were indirect, such as World War II (and how it led to direct events such as medical advances that shifted focus from critical care and managing contagion to preventive medicine and health insurance as an employee benefit) and the internet (which has provided a wealth of tools and resources that were once only available to healthcare providers and has served to foster technological advancements such as Electronic Health Records and telemedicine). Others were targeted interventions, such as the Hill-Burton Act, which was enacted in 1946 and provided infrastructure dollars to healthcare facilities that agreed to provide a significant volume of free or reduced cost services to those with limited ability to pay (HRSA, 2014). Perhaps the most influential targeted event was the passage of Medicare and Medicaid programs, which was the point at which the government became the administrator for insurance programs for the poor, creating a system that would continuously grow and impact service delivery through regulatory control.

There is no doubt that these events have improved and advanced the science of medicine as a whole and that lives have been improved and saved through the availability of healthcare within the system that has been created. The introduction and availability of antibiotics alone has restored to good health countless individuals who in the century before would have certainly died from bacterial infection.

These advancements have come with a hefty price tag the government has subsidized, incidentally creating a dependence upon such subsidies. Sheer demand for services as the population grows (and grows older) ...

... middle of paper ...

...e, and best maximize non-governmental resources, enabling and habilitating individuals, families, and communities to return to a model of responsibility and accountability that decreases dependence on public funding for services.


Health Resources and Services Administration. (2014). Hill-Burton Free and Reduced-Cost Health Care. Retrieved on 2/9/14 from http://www.hrsa.gov/gethealthcare/affordable/hillburton

HACKER, J. S. (2010). Health Reform 2.0. American Prospect, 21(7), A25-A26.

Klein, E. (2014). A health industry expert on ‘the fundamental problem with Obamacare.’ The Washington Post. Retrieved on 2/8/14 from http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2014/01/09/a-health-industry-expert-on-the-fundamental-problem-with-obamacare

Williams, S. & Torrens, P., (2008) Introduction to Health Services, 7th edition, Thomson-Delmar Learning, 2008.

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