Healthcare equality problems

Week 7 Main Post

Healthcare equality is a problem for people all over the world. America is not immune to this problem. There are many Americans that are uninsured or underinsured, as well as those that do not have the means to get to a facility even if they could pay for it. A survey performed by the commonwealth fund found that in this year alone, 12.5% of Americans are uninsured while 43% are underinsured. (Collins et al., 2020) Not having access to proper, necessary healthcare places a considerable burden on families.

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One family that comes to mind is a patient seen in the clinic for an aggressive form of brain cancer. The patient was in her early sixties and was not only taking care of her disabled husband but recently took custody of her two grandchildren that were 10 and 13. The patient did have some insurance but definitely fell into the inadequately insured category. She had undergone a tumor resection by one of the surgeons in the office and was receiving chemo and radiation treatments for her cancer. The patient voiced concern over the mounting medical bills she was receiving and no longer being able to work due to her surgery and treatments she felt like she was drowning.

Access to healthcare often depends on age, gender, financial situation, disability status, race, co-morbidities, and where someone lives. (AHRQ, 2018) The patient in clinic had many of these factors. She was older, came from poverty, was disabled, and now a pre-existing co-morbidity. Even though the healthcare disparities in the U.S. are well known, how to solve them remains a daunting, controversial topic. With out-of-pocket expenses, deductibles, and costs associated with time off work and transportation, healthcare affordability seems like an impossible mountain to climb. (Williams et al., 2016)

One solution that may start to alleviate some of the financial stress is having more public assistance programs available or more awareness about the ones that are available. Organizations such as the American Life Fund and the American Cancer Society both have programs that can assist in co-pay payments, transportation fees, and lodging. Many of the pharmaceutical companies have programs that patients can be enrolled in to help cover the cost of drugs, but there does seem to be more restrictions on these programs. (ALF, 2017) Nurses should also make sure that patients are set up with a case manager that can help them navigate and apply to the different assistance programs available.

Nurse educators play an important role when it comes to healthcare in the U.S. They need to educate patients while being their advocate for the same care someone with gold-star insurance would receive. When a patient receives a devastating diagnosis such as brain cancer, providing them with hope and empowering them to feel like they can take this on and beat it can make all the difference.

 

References

AHRQ. (2018). Access and disparities in access to health care. Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. https://www.ahrq.gov/research/findings/nhqrdr/nhqdr15/access.html

ALF. (2017, December 4). Organizations that help cancer patients financially. American Life Fund. https://www.americanlifefund.com/organizations-help-cancer-patients-financially/

Collins, S. R., Gunja, M. Z., & Aboulafia, G. N. (2020). U.S. Health insurance coverage in 2020: A looming crisis in affordability. The Commonwealth Fund. https://www.commonwealthfund.org/publications/issue-briefs/2020/aug/looming-crisis-health-coverage-2020-biennial

Williams, J., Walker, R. J., & Egede, L. E. (2016). Achieving equity in an evolving healthcare system: Opportunities and challenges. The American Journal of the Medical Sciences, 351(1), 33–43. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.amjmsMorgan Lensing-Main Post

COLLAPSE

Incorporating technology into lesson plans not only has the power to transform teaching, but accelerate the rate of learning, reduce costs associated with educational materials, enhance creativity, and utilize teaching time more efficiently (U.S. Department of Education, n.d.). A technology tool that could be incorporated into a lesson plan for nursing students is Kahoot!. Kahoot! is a program that offers educators and students a way to use quizzes in the classroom or outside of the classroom at no cost (Kahoot!, n.d.). Educators can create their quizzes or utilize one of the 40 plus million pre-created quizzes (Barnes, 2017). Kahoot! can be used as an assessment tool for diet and lifestyle modifications for type II diabetes. Assessment is done to gather, summarize, interpret, and use the data to decide what direction of teaching the educator should pursue (Bonnel et al., 2019). With the information gathered from Kahoot!, it would show me what areas need more focus. Students would also be able to utilize Kahoot! outside of the classroom. They would be able to take additional quizzes on type II diabetes to gain more information.

So how would I use Kahoot! in the classroom setting? Nursing students would either download the app on a mobile device or access it through a webpage. Throughout the lecture, I would have questions pop-up on the screen and have the students answer. This will give me a general idea of how the students retain the information and what areas may need for focus. Not only will it provide me with information, but it also keeps the lecture exciting and the students engaged.

Kahoot! is also beneficial for the students’ learner characteristics. A learning characteristic that may affect nursing students is cognitive abilities as it pertains to gender. All students learn through various teaching styles. Rather than lecturing to students and not meeting all learners’ needs, Kahoot! is an added teaching method to meet additional learners’ needs.

 

References

Barnes, R. (2017). Kahoot! in the classroom: Student engagement technique. Nurse Educator, 42(6). https://journals.lww.com/nurseeducatoronline/Citation/2017/11000/Kahoot__in_the_Classroom__Student_Engagement.4.aspx

Bonnel, W. E, Smith, K. V., & Hober, C. L. (2019). Teaching technologies in nursing and the health professions: Strategies for engagement, quality, and safety (2nd ed.). Springer.

Kahoot!. (n.d.). How it works. https://kahoot.com/schools/how-it-works/

U.S. Department of Education. (n.d.). Use of technology in teaching and learning. https://www.ed.gov/oii-news/use-technology-teaching-and-learning

 

 

Kahoot! Link: https://kahoot.com

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