In this assignment I will be focusing on the health care policy and how it impacts the lives of children, young people and their families. The Welfare state is a system which protects the health and well being of its citizens especially those in financial and social needs by grants, pensions and other benefits (Cambridge Dictionary, 2019). This is a key example of a social policy which consists of strict regulations that affect the living conditions of human welfare (Hacker, 2002). The welfare system are social organisations which restricts free market operations in three principal ways by designating of certain groups, for example factory workers, delivery of services such as medical care or education and transferring payments in times of exceptional need like parenthood (Fraser, 2009). “It is a system of social organisation which restricts free market operations in three principal ways: by the designation of certain groups, such as children or factory workers, whose rights are guaranteed and whose welfare is protected by the community; by the delivery of services such as medical care or education, so that no citizen shall be deprived of access to them; and by transfer payments which maintain income in times of exceptional need, such as parenthood, or of interruption of earnings caused by such things as sickness or unemployment” (Fraser, 2009).
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As I explained above I will be focusing on the health policy. Health policy is defined as decision plans and actions that are undertaken to achieve specific health care goals within a society according to the world Health Organisation (World health organisation, 2019). The policy outlines several priorities and expected roles.This informes people there are many categories of health policies including personal Healthcare policy, pharmaceutical policy and public health such as vaccination policy and breastfeeding policy. The health care policy is important as it sets a general plan of action for good healthy outcomes (World health organisation, 2019).
However, the concern for health policy became intense in 2005 when two issues had emerged; adult and childhood obesity and the quality, proportion of children school meals. They have been suggested that childhood obesity is a recurring issue that’s become a problem for the children all over different countries but mostly in the UK. The latest issue was highlighted when a popular TV chef Jamie Oliver came out with a programme, ‘Jamie school dinners’ which was found that the kind of food and quality of it was poor and that the basic take in of nutritional standards were absent. This was the reason for defective learning and early signs of behavioral problems which can lead to future health problems (Alcock, Daly & Griggs, 2010).This suggests that there is an issue of health and the concern is more with the health services/ NHS. Furthermore, the Government’s aim has been set to improve and revive health services by developing the quality care of the NHS (Alcock, May, Wright, 2012). Due to this, the NHS has required more funding from the late years of 1997 to 1999 (Hacker, 2002). For example in the winter of 1999 to 2000 the pressure on NHS hospitals had increased, resulting in bed shortages and trolly- waits for patients. (Alcock, May, Wright, 2012).
Additionally, the NHS is the national health service which was launched in 1948 and believed to be the best health care that should be available to all residence regardless how much you earn, with the exception of some charges, such as prescriptions, optical services and dental services (NHS, 2019). Over the years the NHS policies have changed over time since it has largely been funded by taxes. It works by the government deciding how much money the NHS receives and keep in high level settings and is divided to a range of other organisations. For example the lion’s share goes to an organisation called NHS England. It was created in 2013 as part of sweeping reforms aimed at improving services by increasing competition and keeping the government out of the day to day running of the NHS (NHS choices, 2010). NHS services passes most of its money on to 200 or so clinical commissioning groups (CCG) across England, which have been identify local health needs and then plan and buy care for people in their area. CCG run services from organisations of different shapes and sizes from NHS trusts that run hospitals and community services to GPS and others that provide NHS care, including organizations, run by charities and the private sector (NHS choices, 2010). However, the NHS never stays the same for long and the way these organisations work together is by making changes. The most recent changes started in 2014 when NHS England published a vision for the healthcare for the healthcare called the NHS five year forward view, this called for more of a focus on preventing people getting ill in the first place and giving patients more control of their own care, it also sets out of range of so called new models of care (NHS choices, 2010). The aim was to get services, working together to provide joined up care for patients but there has not been much progress on the prevention side of things. Lots of Energy’s been put behind the new models. These set out to do things like provide care traditionally delivered in hospitals like chemotherapy in people’s homes and get people to work differently for instance dementia specialists carrying out clinics and GP surgeries. This new way of working is particularly designed to help meet the needs of increasing numbers of people who need support and manage a range of long term health conditions, particularly older people (NHS choices, 2010).
Conjointly, The public health system is a process which protects the economy from terrorism, infectious disease outbreaks and natural disasters. But also has features which keeps the aim in line so it enables everyone especially those with low income or poor to seek treatment when they need it. This can prevent the spread of diseases such as malaria and is available in places like urban areas (Alcock, May, Wright, 2012). Moreover, combining the topic as a whole I have discovered that as the health policy develops into becoming better, health itself is central to human happiness and well-being. It also makes an important contribution to economic progress, as healthy populations live longer, they are more productive and save more money and resources (Alcock, May, Wright, 2012). Especially those who struggle financially, they are able depend on the policy relating to any of their health issues.
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In conclusion I have stated an outline of the UK health policy and system, affecting the UK residence and the development of the policy since the late 19th century. I have discussed the features of the public health care system, especially the NHS and explored the changing relationships of the different styles of health policies. Finally, I have identified a wider health policy agenda embracing such issues as the inequalities in health which lie beyond the department of health. Therefore shows health policy poses many challenges for the government and may be detrimental for majority of the population in the future.
- Alcock, C., Daly, G., & Griggs, E. (2010). Introducing Social Policy. Milton: Taylor & Francis
- Alcock. P, May. M, Wright. S. (2012). Social Policy.
- Cambridge Definitions. (2019), Definition of the welfare state. Retrieved from https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/welfare-state
- Jacob. H. (2002), The divided welfare state: The battle over public and private social benefits in the United States. Retrieved from https://scholar.google.co.uk/scholar?q=benefits+of+welfare+state&hl=en&as_sdt=0&as_vis=1&oi=scholar
- NHS choices. (2010), The history of the NHS. Retrieved from https://www.nhs.uk/Tools/Documents/The%20history%20of%20the%20NHS.htm
- World Health organisation. (2019), Health policy. Retrieved from https://www.who.int/topics/health_policy/en/
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