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Health System Essay

2748 words - 11 pages

Health is a basic human need, and the basic rights of citizens. Evaluation and comparison of health systems of countries is necessary. This essay mainly discusses the dissimilarity and common barriers of health systems in two different countries, Taiwan and Australia. First, this article uses some frameworks to analyse in-depth and to understand the health system's mode of operation and process of service delivery in these two countries through a literature review (Cheng, 2009; Marmor & Wendt, 2012; Wendt, Frisina, & Rothgang, 2009). Next, three levels will be used to compare the two health systems and provide specific data about Taiwan and Australia to support the author's arguments. The ...view middle of the document...

Taiwan's government implemented four major social insurance programs before the introduction of national health insurance in 1995. The four insurance plans, including labour insurance (1950), the Government Employees Insurance Company (1958), the social insurance scheme farmers insurance (in 1985) and low-income households Insurance (1990). These existing social insurance programs have covered about 57% of the total population in 1995 (Cheng, 2003; Lu & Hsiao, 2003; Kuan & Chen, 2013; Rachel & Chiang, 2011).
Since 1995, Taiwan has begun to implement the National Health Insurance (NHI) program. This health insurance system has three basic goals: to provide equal rights and access to medical care for all citizens; to control the total medical expenses at a reasonable level; and to promote effective use of medical resources (Kreng & Yang, 2011; Kuan & Chen, 2013; Rachel & Chiang, 2011). The National Health Insurance (NHI) provides comprehensive welfare, covering prevention and medical services and expenses, prescription drugs, dental services, and home nurse visits. It is mandatory for a comprehensive social insurance. The characteristics of the NHI program are: sources of income from the insurance premiums; people participate in different insurance plans; health care providers based on private medical institutions (Kuan & Chen, 2013; Rachel & Chiang, 2011). Currently, in Taiwan's National Health Insurance system, the public needs to pay regular insurance premiums, and pay part of the cost burden after each medical examination. For the rest of the health care spending, the government foots the bill. According to the total premiums of Taiwan’s NHI in 2011, the object of insurance premiums accounted for 37.6%, followed by the insurance premiums units which accounted for 37.2%, while the government-subsidized insurance premiums accounted for 25.2% (Ministry of the Interior Department, R.O.C. [Taiwan], 2013).
Health insurance co-payments provisions of two U.S. dollars for each outpatient clinic and five U.S. dollars each to the medical centre clinic are in place to avoid misuse of health care system. Furthermore, there are 10% co-insurance inpatient services, but a maximum of 10% of per capita income, and the patient must pay for each admission to the total amount of 6% annually (Lu & Hsiao, 2003; Rachel & Chiang, 2011). As of 2004, 97.4 precent of Taiwan's population was enrolled in the NHI program. By 2011, 99 % of the population had joined the health plan. Taiwan's population has enjoyed easy access to health care and a few out-of-pocket costs and benefits since the beginning of the implementation of the NHI (Cheng, 2009; Kuan & Chen, 2013; Wang, Chen, Hsu, & Wang, 2012). The influence of factors such as rapid medical and biotechnology advances, increases in income and level of education, and the increase in the aging population has resulted in the health of the people and the national average life expectancy improving significantly....

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