Future Challenges for Healthcare Management
January 22, 2014
Healthcare management has evolved with time, restoring hope to many helpless patients who had resigned to their fate. The prospects for healthcare management are great, opportunities are immense, but there are also daunting challenges that threatening to the future success and prospects of this sector. These challenges range from those related to the patients, socio-economic backgrounds of the patients, health insurers, and healthcare providers.
Key Future Challenges to Healthcare Management
With the many inventions taking place in the field of medicine and health, many tend to believe that the future of healthcare management is very bright. Although promising, there are a number of challenges that limit effective healthcare management. First and foremost, change in the lifestyles of people presents a major challenge to the management of healthcare. The current generation breeds individuals who are lazy, hate doing exercises, consume fast foods, and prefer hybrid lifestyles that come at a cost. It is such associated costs that make the future of healthcare management gloomy and hopeless. It is therefore not a surprise that many diseases keep creeping in unbidden.
With the changing lifestyles, managing healthcare will become a major challenge as many will get infected with ailments that are avoidable through living healthy and observing individual wellness. Healthcare providers will get overwhelmed with the number of patients making dates with them for check-ups and screening for chronic health conditions such as obesity and various types of cancers.
Another daunting challenge that is will burden healthcare management is the shouldering of the financial liability of providing for healthcare to the insurers. With the rising demand for medical cover and insurance, insurers have spotted an opportunity to exploit and benefit themselves at the expense of the insured. Besides, most of these health insurance companies are likely to view this as a gateway to profit-maximization without minding about the contributors. This will limit the ability of patients to get access to affordable healthcare services without further digging deep into their out-of-pocket funds. It will not be a surprise when fake insurers come up to extort money from innocent and unsuspecting individuals, making their life miserable and unworthy of living. This will probably have adverse impacts on healthcare management and service delivery.
The professional and academic qualifications of the healthcare providers are also likely to change. While many of the health colleges become endowed with the necessary facilities to professionally, efficiently, and competently handle healthcare management, their performance fall below the expected standards. Besides, some of these institutions will take advantage of students only to reap money and provide low quality academic standards. The production of half-baked health providers will be one of the greatest challenges that healthcare management will experience. And with the explosion of many colleges and schools with questionable integrity and reputation, this is going to become unavoidable.
Many healthcare providers and institutions continue to emerge. Some of these facilities are ill-equipped to provide superior healthcare management as they purport to do. This trend is likely to continue into the foreseeable future, thereby presenting a major challenge to healthcare management. Many hospitals are quickly becoming business hubs that value money over the lives of their clients. Such a trend would be detrimental to the future of healthcare management as it will lower the quality of care provided by healthcare facilities. Healthcare providers no longer value the lives of their clients: they value the money since they will be profit-driven.
In conclusion, these challenges need to be addressed to bring sanity back to the field of healthcare management. Patients have a right to quality healthcare and insurers have a duty to provide medical cover for these health conditions. The healthcare providers, on the other hand, have a responsibility to provide quality healthcare to their patients. The stakeholders in healthcare management have to wake up to the realization that there are challenges and that these challenges need should be exhaustively addressed; otherwise, the major setbacks awaits health this sector.
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Walshe, K., & Smith, J. Healthcare Management. Maidenhead: Open University Press, McGraw-Hill, 2011.