Access to Healthcare

Access to healthcare is a key issue in the United States. People who are sick or injured need to be able to get medical care in a timely manner, and the quality of that care needs to be high. But there are many barriers to achieving this goal, including financial issues, transportation difficulties, and other social problems.

In the simplest terms, the term “access to healthcare” refers to a person’s ability to identify their healthcare needs, to locate health care services, and to use those services in proportion to their need. However, the concept of access is complex. It is often defined based on a combination of several factors, including the availability of healthcare resources and the characteristics of those who utilise them. Some authors have argued that the definition of access should include both supply and demand, while others have emphasised the role of the characteristics and expectations of potential users [1].

Some researchers have disaggregated the concept of accessibility into four aspects: the ability to identify healthcare needs, the willingness of a population to use healthcare resources and their ability to do so, and the ability of a community to mobilise its own healthcare resources. Using the term in this way allows for greater operationalisation and measurement of specific determinants of access, such as the existence of obstacles, impediments and difficulties or the presence of facilitative factors.

The most significant barrier to accessing healthcare is the cost of the services themselves. A recent West Health and Gallup poll found that three in 10 Americans report skipping health care due to the costs involved. access to healthcare

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