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Economical Issues In Health Care Essay

1878 words - 8 pages

Economy plays a huge role in our everyday life and especially in health care industry. The modern medical markets have developed in such a way that any economical change will almost certainly effect middle and lower class population in the negative way. The increased availability of more effective medical care programs have changed expectations about what physicians could do and highly increased the demand for medical services while simultaneously increasing the price of these services. The one indication of this change is a reproductive medicine, which clearly shows a direct link between economic issues and health care.Economic issues affect many decisions that are essentially ethical in nature. In Vitro Fertilization (IVF), in particular, presents one such ethical dilemma. For example, economics influence the number of IVF attempts that a couple may undergo. Consequently, a couple's financial status may affect a physician's judgment on how many embryos to transfer. Economical and ethical issues are also present in the area of egg donations. As one can expect, the couples are paying higher and higher prices to egg donors. One potential solution to the high cost of undergoing repeated IVF attempts that have encouraged ethical questions might be the concept of a refund program when the treatment is unsuccessful.Another medical issue that is affected by economics involves advising couples when to stop treatment. It is difficult to watch couples exhausting their financial resources on multiple IVF attempts, possibly leaving themselves unable to pursue other means of family building, such as adoption. When is it appropriate for a health care provider to suggest that quitting IVF may be the best way for a couple to realize their dream of actually raising a child?Through agencies like The Center for Surrogate Parenting and Surrogate Parenting Services, couples from all over the world seek egg donation and surrogates. Since these options are highly restricted throughout the world, California has become a Mecca for these patients. Since IVF is a partially funded or fully covered health benefit in most of the other foreign countries, it is amazing how many attempts many couples have undergone before seeking consultation. Most research shows that success rates drop significantly after a certain number of attempts. However, since there is no financial incentive to stop treatment, patients are encouraged by their physicians to continue, despite the literature showing the relatively futile nature of these many attempts.The economical changes in the health care sector also have a strong effect on the way health care is paid for. The increase in medical productivity and the blend of large numbers of personnel and capital resources increases the cost of medical care relative to average incomes. The average family has a stronger incentive to worry about the cost of number of IVF attempts they may undertake because they faced a higher probability of going into a...

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