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The Concept Of Equity Of Access In The Australian Healthcare System

2494 words - 10 pages

The Australian health care system is founded on the concept of equity of Access. Discuss this Statement with relation to the concepts of Effectiveness and efficiency and any interrelation that may exist.
1. Introduction:
As Stated in the National Health Reform Agreement-Equity of Access is the fundamental base of the Australian Health Care System (DHA. 2013a). Effectiveness, which focuses on ratio of outputs to outcomes and efficiency, which defines as achieving maximum outputs with available inputs or resources, these are other elementary aspects of the Australian Health Care System. Equity, effectiveness and efficiency these represents ideal health system, which should be effective and efficient and able to achieve the specified outcomes (efficacy) in a way that maximize access (distribution); outputs (productivity) and outcomes within the resource available (NHHRC. 2009. P.4). Responsibilities like funding, delivery & regulation is shared by the national & state government of Australia makes the Australian Health Care system universally accessible within the people (AIHW, 2000). Public hospitals & community care funding is joined effort of common wealth (i.e. federal government), states & territories where common wealth use its taxation revenue to fund most of hospital medical service & health research (Common wealth Department of Health & age care, 2000). Since 1990’s National & State health Minister worked with many stakeholders to develop a certain National framework to assessing the Australian health system (NHPC, 2000). A new Australian health performance measurement framework adapted from Canadian Health information Roadmap Initiative Indicator framework was commenced by NHPC (NHPC, 2001).
2. Equity:
Equity in health and health care can be defined many ways in context of social objective. As Amarty sen argued, when we talk equity we forget to ask on fundamental question ‘equity of what?’ (Sen, A.,1992). But for the context of our knowledge and study we base our understanding on the definition of culyer & wagstaff, ‘equality of health status and health care access as appropriate positive criteria for normative judgment regarding equity in distribution of health and health care (Culyer, A.J., & Wagstaff, A., 1993). It gives you a sense of fairness, but sharpens fairness by adding equality. Equity is not same as equality; it simply implies similarity of status, capacity or opportunity. Equity is an ethical value. Equity in health reflects a concern to reduce a unequal opportunities to be healthy associated with membership in less privileged social group, such as poor people, disenfranchised racial, ethnic or religious groups, woman & rural resident ( Braverman, P. & Gruskin, S., 2003). Further Braverman et.al states that pursuing equity in health mean eliminating health disparities that are associated with underlying social disadvantage or marginalized or disenfranchised group within, but not limited to the poor.
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