British vs American vs Indian vs UAE Health Care System
The significance of health care in modern day society can be gauged from the fact that good health is recognized as one of the fundamental rights of an individual. So much so, that out of the eight recognized millennium development goals of the United Nations, health finds its place in three of them (United Nations, 2000). The enormity of the health issues around the world especially in the developing and poor countries is well documented. Today, the health care industry continues to evolve offering a range of new specialised services and treatments and also contributing to a significant part of a country’s economy
UAE Health Care System
With UAE undergoing a rapid demographic transition, it has successfully managed to attain the highest standards of health care specifically in Dubai and Abu Dhabi. The health care system in UAE is a mix of public-private system. There is a public health care system for all Emiratis with centralised management and financing models and there is a large and growing private sector in the main urban centres.
Public Health Care
It is organised in 2 tiers.
- Primary care
- Hospital care
While Primary care is delivered through primary healthcare centres in various levels based on location and size of population served. Hospital care is delivered through general and central specialised hospitals.
Private Health Care
Its services are increasing at a rapid rate everywhere in the UAE through clinics, private hospitals and medical cities. The number of private hospitals exceeds the number of public hospitals. This growth has been driven by the large numbers of foreign workers and expatriates who are usually not allowed to use Ministry of Health facilities except for emergencies. Cost of health care in the private sector is high and increasing at over 13% annually.
Abu Dhabi’s Thiqa and Daman
The Government of Abu Dhabi offers full medical coverage to all UAE nationals living in Abu Dhabi through the Thiqa’ programme and National Health Insurance Company, Daman. Citizens get a Thiqa card, through which they get an unlimited 12-month health insurance policy and inpatient and outpatient care within Daman’s network. Saada provides insurance and treatment through a large network of healthcare providers to the citizens in the emirate of Dubai.The Government of Ajman also provides all its employees with health insurance. In UAE, employers and sponsors are responsible for the providing health insurance coverage for their employees and their families (1 spouse and 3 children under 18 years)
American Health Care System
The United States spends more on health care services than does any other nation, the expenditure being funded by Federal, State, and local government, as well as private insurance and individual payments.
The US government funds three kinds of health plans.
- Children’s Health Insurance
However, these programs do not cover all the citizens but are especially designed for the elderly, disabled, poor, and young.However most employers provide healthcare as a fringe benefit in job packages.
It is a state-based insurance program administered by the federal government, for seniors aged 65 and older, and by some people living with a disability. Medicare consists of four “parts”, Medicare Part A provides hospital insurance, funded through payroll taxes. Medicare Part B provides medical insurance, for which individuals pay monthly premiums. Medicare Part C, the Medicare Advantage Plans, is a voucher program offered through private commercial insurers and Medicare Part D is an outpatient prescription drug program offered through private insurers.
It is voluntarily provided by the federal government states and controls the eligibility of their programs.
Children’s Health Insurance Program
It covers children from families at between 200 percent and 300 percent of the federal poverty level and pregnant women in some states. The uninsured Americans who are neither covered by the government program or by the employer, access non-profit community health centres and emergency rooms through the Emergency Medical Treatment and Active Labor Act (EMTALA) of 1986, which enforces participating hospitals to accept all patients but only for a medical assessment and stabilization
To expand insurance coverage for Americans, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010, also known as Obamacare, was introduced in 2010 requires most Americans to purchase health insurance coverage. There have been a variety of features introduced each year since the bill passed to improve quality of health care.
The U. S. health system ranks ranking last of 10 OECD countries when it comes to efficiency, equity, access and indicators of healthy lives while it ranked highest in effective and patient-centred care.
British Health Care System
Health care in the United Kingdom with England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales each having their own systems of publicly funded healthcare system called the National Health Service. The NHS in England, NHS Scotland, NHS Wales, and the affiliated Health and Social Care in Northern Ireland provide the majority of healthcare in England, including primary care, in-patient care, long-term healthcare, ophthalmology and dentistry. Social care services are a shared responsibility between the local NHS and the local government’s Directors of Social Services, under Department of Health. The NHS serves over 1 million patients every 36 hours and undoubtedly is the world’s fifth-largest employer by number of employees.
Healthcare coverage is free to all permanent residents at the point of need and is paid for by general taxation. About 18% of a citizen’s income tax goes towards healthcare, which is about 4.5% of the average citizen’s income. UK also has a growing private healthcare sector which is growing exponentially to cater to the changing consumer expectation of healthcare.
The health insurance system in UK is governed by National Health Services in all of the different parts of UK.The single largest British health insurance company in UK, BUPA is a private healthcare company, making it an alternative to the tax-funded coverage provided to all residents by the NHS.For disabled people, a Disability Living Allowance and Attendance Allowance are available for people who need help with personal care (care component), getting around (mobility component) or both.
Quality of care is one of the key focuses of the NHS. Quality of care delivered is not only monitored by the regulatory body formed by Care Quality Commission in 2008 but is also monitored by the Department of Health and its Strategic Health Authorities.
Indian Health Care System
Health care system in India is mixed system comprising public and private health-care service providers. Most of the private health-care providers provide secondary and tertiary care health-care services in urban areas. On the other hand, the public health care infrastructure in rural areas is developed as a three-tier system based on population norms.
- Public health care
- Private health care
Comparison of British, American and UAE Health Care Systems
Though the American health care system is the costliest in the world, the US is not performing best in terms of access, patient safety, coordination, efficiency, and equity. While US healthcare sets age and income requirements (Medicaid or Medicare) for public healthcare coverage, UK and UAE makes public health care accessible to all UK and UAE permanent residents. American health care workers and health facilities operate privately, whereas in the UK, facilities operate publicly and workers are public employees. It’s typical for employers and insured individuals to pay a portion of the cost in all the three countries. Common minimum standards could benefit patients including the organisational standards of hospitals, clinical governance of practice, better information for patients, and a national complaints procedure should be available worldwide. It’s clear that the UK, USA and UAE have an ever-growing need for healthcare workers.