NUR-550 Benchmark – Diverse Population Health Policy Analysis
NUR-550 Benchmark – Diverse Population Health Policy Analysis
¡Policy name: S.Res. 254- Supporting the designation of “Mental Health Awareness Month.”
¡Background: toll on the mental well-being due to COVID-19
¡The Senate to support awareness month to fight stigmatization
¡Emphasize scientific findings regarding mental health recovery
¡Declare mental health a national priority
You will find important health information regarding minority groups by exploring the following Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) links:
- Minority Health: http://www.cdc.gov/minorityhealt/index.html
- Racial and Ethnic Minority Populations: http://www.cdc.gov/minorityhealt/populations/remp.html
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With population health needs varying profoundly and impacting diverse populations differently, it is important to have practical interventions to improve access, quality, and cost-effectiveness of care. Such policies are usually structured in a way that addresses specific population needs (McKenzie et al., 2021). Generally, S.Res. 254 proposals are based on the premise that COVID-19 has affected many lives adversely, with mental pressures rising over time. Accordingly, the policy obliges the Senate to support awareness month to fight stigmatization associates with mental health. Other focus areas include emphasizing scientific findings regarding mental health recovery and declaring mental health a national priority. These interventions will reduce the toll on mental well-being due to COVID-19 and ensure that mental health patients receive the attention and care they deserve.
Diverse Population Affected By The Policy
¡Population of Interest: mental health patients
¡Demographics: US adults and children
¡Struggling with mental health
¡Vulnerable to substance abuse
¡Often misunderstood and undertreated
¡Social isolation and psychological stress
As the policy states, the population of focus is people with mental health problems. S.Res. 254 addresses the need for both adults and
children. This population struggle with mental health well-being and are vulnerable to substance abuse (Carbonell et al., 2020). Given this, their problems and vulnerability to other health issues and complications increase proportionately. Vaccari et al. (2020) further found that people with mental health problems are highly stigmatized since their conditions are not sufficiently understood. They need support as much as possible. Loades et al. (2020) also noted that people with mental health problems are victims of social isolation and psychological stress. Awareness programs and prioritizing their needs will reduce the overall impact of COVID-19 and related problems.
Improving Cost-effectiveness and Health Care Equity
¡The policy focuses on preventing the gradual increase in mental health issues
¡Preventive health reduces the overall cost of care
¡Spending on mental health treatment and services is over $200 billion (Baumgartner et al., 2020,).
¡Awareness reduces the overall illness burden in hospitals and families
¡Resources used for mental health treatment and services can be used differently with increased awareness.
Affordability and access to health care services have been real concerns affecting population health. Cost-effectiveness is a reliable indicator of feasible policies and programs. The policy focuses on preventing the gradual increase in mental health issues, implying that it will be instrumental in reducing the financial burden associated with treating mental health problems. Baumgartner et al. (2020) found that the annual spending towards mental health in the United States is over $200 billion annually. Awareness reduces this cost and the overall illness burden in hospitals and families. Importantly, increased awareness will ensure that resources used for mental health treatment and services can be used in other ways, such as promoting healthy eating.
Improving Cost-effectiveness and Health Care Equity
Improving Health Care Equity
¡Health Care Equity: delivering health care services fairly and quality not according patient or population group characteristics.
S.Res. 254 Improves Health Care Equity by:
¡Recognizing mental well-being as important as other health aspects
¡Prompting the Senate to ensure access to appropriate services of care
¡Supporting overall quality of life for people with mental illnesses
Despite populations varying in terms of needs, geographical locations, and socioeconomic status, all people deserve health care services when needed and in the manner needed. Health care equity is primarily about delivering health care services fairly and properly and not according to patient or population group characteristics (Brown et al., 2019; Butler, 2021). Recognizing mental well-being as important as others health aspects such as physical health is a practical way of promoting health care equity since it ensures that mental health is not treated differently. As a result, mental health patients can receive the deserved services when needed. In the same case, the policy also obliges the Senate to ensure access to appropriate services of care and continuously support the overall quality of life for people with mental illnesses.
Financial Implications of the Policy
Why the Policy is Financially Sound
¡Applies affordable strategies at the organizational and public level
¡The goal is to raises awareness which can be done through different media
¡Information can be broadcasted
¡Uses the public to help those in need for mental health assistance
¡Rationale: financially sound policies justify their financial investments via sustainable outcomes
Although outcomes vary, health care policies should be financially sound. Their overall benefits should outdo the costs after a cost-benefit analysis. One of the ways making the policy financially sound is its application of affordable strategies at the organizational and public levels. Health care organizations can apply the same strategies that the policy proposes to advance mental health care. With the primary goal being to raise awareness, different media can be used, and the information can be broadcasted. Also, informing the public will be instrumental in supporting people with mental health problems in communities at little or considerable cost. Eventually, policy implementation becomes sustainable, and the gains profound.
Incorporating the Nursing Perspective, Ethical, Legal, and Political Factors
¡Incorporating the Nursing Perspective: focuses on making mental health victims more functional and free from illness and disability
Ethical, Legal, and Political Factors
¡Ethical: reduces harm to mental health patients in the American population
¡Legal: the policy is founded on law
¡The policy promotes equal health care services as a right
¡Political: relies on Senate support for implementation and continuous support
¡Rationale: legal and political foundation provides a stable framework for executing the policy recommendations ethically.
Solutions to population health needs apply different perspectives and consider many factors. The nursing perspective is among the highly applied in delivering the best outcomes. The policy applies the nursing perspective by providing a mechanism to make people with mental health problems more functional and free from illness and disability. A nursing perspective is centered on health promotion and reducing adverse outcomes such as suffering and dying in the individual, family, and community contexts (Fu et al., 2020). Ethically, harm reduction is an ethical consideration while promoting equal health services as a right is a legal consideration. Politically, the policy relies on Senate support for implementation and continuous support.
There exist different healthcare policies meant to enhance the delivery of quality healthcare. Some of the current healthcare policies include Affordable Care Policy, Medicare program, Medicaid, Children’s health insurance program, Patient Safety, and Quality Improvement Act. The main purpose of healthcare policies and procedures is to facilitate standardization in healthcare operational activities. Healthcare policies are critical or essential in providing correct procedures to be followed when dealing with issues as well as activities that are important to health and safety. The Affordable Care Act is one of the major current healthcare policies that has transformed the healthcare industry. The Affordable Care Act was passed and signed into law in the year 2010 (Barr, 2016). The policy aimed at providing affordable health insurance coverage to the entire American population. Affordable Care Policy was also created to protect healthcare consumers from costly private insurance companies and would sometimes put restrictions on the healthcare services for the patients. Over the years, millions of Americans have been able to benefit from the Affordable Care policy. Millions of Americans have experienced a significant reduction in healthcare costs. Before the implementation of the Affordable Care Policy, poor Americans could not get effective insurance coverage. The purpose of the paper is therefore to examine the ACA and its attendant cost-effectiveness, relationship to other policies and advocacy strategies.
How the Affordable Care Policy Was Designed to Improve Cost-Effectiveness
And Health Care Equity for the Population
The Affordable Care Act was designed to enhance healthcare equity. The affordable Care policy was mainly designed to significantly reduce the differences in health outcomes among ethnic, racial, as well as primary language groups (Eichten, 2018). In other words, the policy was meant to address disparities in healthcare delivery and enhance the provision of healthcare to all the population irrespective of the level of income. The major goals of the Affordable Care Act included a reduction in healthcare costs, expansion of healthcare coverage, general improvement in healthcare quality, and population health. These factors were incorporated to reduce health disparities. With the reduced costs and expansion of coverage, ACA was meant to achieve healthcare equity for all the population. Different provisions of the Affordable Care Act directly impact insurers who have been forced to expand the number of people under the cover as well as the conditions under coverage.
To expand healthcare coverage and ensure reduced costs, Affordable Care Act created marketplaces called exchanges where people from different social-economic statuses could purchase health insurance and define their financial aid or assistance eligibility. There are three major types of marketplaces in ACA (Glied & Jackson, 2017). These marketplaces include state-based marketplaces, federal-based marketplaces, as well as state-partnership marketplaces. Since its inception in the healthcare industry, millions of Americans have been able to obtain medical services at a reduced cost. Also, the treatment of some diseases has been fully covered by Obamacare.
Affordable Care Policy is financially sound. Before implementation, it was estimated that Obamacare would reduce the national debt by $140 billion. Also, it was established that the whole policy cost $940 billion considering all the factors that were to be included (Laureate Education, 2018). After the analysis, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office established the policy was effective given its ability to reduce the national budget. Also, The Healthcare and Education Reconciliation Act passed Obama taxes as well as budget cuts in different areas, which generally generated more funds for implementing ACA. Given the effective balance of the budget, there were more funds available to offset the cost of the plan. Affordable Care policy accounts for relevant ethical, legal, and political factors as well as nursing perspectives. All these considerations need to be put in place during the implementation. Specifically, the policy advocates for quality healthcare delivery, application of research and evidence-based practices in the treatment processes, as well as dignity and racial sensitivity in the treatment processes. Through continuous legislations, the policy account for the political factors as well as nursing perspectives. All these issues ought to be considered in the implementation process.
Significance of Affordable Care Policy
The Affordable Care Act is related to different state, federal, and global health policies or goals that have been created over the years. In particular, the Affordable Care policy is related to the Global Health Policy (GHP). Global Health Policy mainly facilitates the allocation of resources in different nations and organizations to ensure access to quality healthcare services. Global Health Policy was formulated to address health challenges for the interdependent nations, sectors, and regions with multiple cultures and races, various levels of development, coexistent values, and a variety of capacities. In other words, Global Health Policy was formulated to address disparities when it comes to the management of population health. Similarly, the Affordable Care Policy was formulated to address disparities in the healthcare delivery processes. Also, both the Affordable Care policy and Global Health Policy aimed to improve healthcare delivery quality through research and innovation (Béland et al., 2019). The two organizations are more concerned with the qualification of healthcare professionals. During the formulation of ACA and GHP, there were considerations of different challenges in the healthcare systems, including costs and emerging diseases. Affordable Care Act is also related to the Patient Safety and Quality Improvement Act (PSQIA), a federal policy passed in the year 2005. Just like PSQIA, the Affordable Care Policy was meant to protect both patients and healthcare workers who are likely to report unsafe conditions. Affordable Care Policy was meant to address the goals of GHP and PSQIA through the allocation of enough resources and an increase in access to healthcare systems.
To ensure that the entire population benefit from the Affordable Care Policy, there is the need to create awareness and inform potential patients and healthcare professionals about the policy’s benefits. Giving patients a voice by informing them about their rights to healthcare services ensures that they can benefit from ACA. Besides, educating patients on the healthcare insurance policies will enable them to understand the requirements in the Affordable Care Policy and how they can benefit from it. In most cases, patients lack knowledge about different insurance policies, especially how they can draw benefits from them (Scott & Scott, 2020). From a Christian perspective, nurses have the responsibility of creating awareness geared towards ensuring quality health outcomes. Also, there is the need for patients from all races to have just and affordable healthcare services. An advanced registered nurse’s professional and moral obligation to advocate for and promote health and prevent disease among diverse populations. When it comes to the provision of quality care geared towards preventing diseases, nurses need to act as advocates to ensure equal treatment and benefits for all. Therefore, through advocacy, patients or different populations will be able to benefit from the Affordable Care Policy.
The Affordable Care Act is one of the major current healthcare policies that has transformed the healthcare industry. The Affordable Care Act was passed and signed into law in the year 2010. Affordable Care policy was mainly designed to significantly reduce the differences in health outcomes among ethnic, racial, as well as primary language groups. In other words, Affordable Care Act was meant to address disparities in healthcare delivery and enhance the provision of healthcare to all the population irrespective of the level of income. Affordable Care Policy is financially sound. Before implementation, it was estimated that Obamacare would reduce the national debt by $140 billion. To ensure that the entire population benefit from the Affordable Care Policy, there is the need to create awareness and inform potential patients and healthcare professionals about the policy’s benefits.
Barr, D. A. (2016). Introduction to US Health Policy: the organization, financing, and delivery of health care in America. Johns Hopkins University Press.
Béland, D., Rocco, P., & Waddan, A. (2019). Policy feedback and the politics of the Affordable Care Act. Policy Studies Journal, 47(2), 395-422. https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/psj.12286
Eichten, Z. (2018). Poison Pills: How Subtle Differences in Processes, Public Opinion, and Leadership Doomed the American Health Care Act and Passed the Affordable Care Act. https://digitalcommons.csbsju.edu/honors_thesis/56/
Glied, S., & Jackson, A. (2017). The future of the Affordable Care Act and insurance coverage. American journal of public health, 107(4), 538-540. https://ajph.aphapublications.org/doi/full/10.2105/AJPH.2017.303665
Laureate Education (Producer). (2018). Introduction to Health Policy and Law with Joel Teitelbaum [Video file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.
Scott, S. M., & Scott, P. A. (2020). Nursing, advocacy and public policy. Nursing Ethics, 0969733020961823. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0969733020961823