Policy and Practice in the Care of Older People

Health policy can be explained as the plans, decisions, and actions that are taken up to achieve certain health goals in a society. The Australian health care system is a complicated mix of federal and state authority financing and responsibility, making it tough for patients to traverse. This complexity has posed challenges in the provision of integrated pathways for the care of old individuals with long-term chronic diseases (Health Policy, 2015). Just like young people, older individuals should also live a healthy life, the rise in adult obese ought to be treated as a public health prime concern.

In as much as the Australians can use Medicare for five allied health service visits, the majority of the aged people find it insufficient due to their need for frequent checkups as a result of the old age diseases. As people age, chronic illnesses distress the majority of them. Medicare is basically a health insurance plan for acute illness; thus, it can hardly fund the chronic care (Health Care Oration, 2008). Besides, the uneven distribution of health services due to low workforce and poor infrastructure makes the older Australians to travel for long distances to seek medical attention. This is quite discouraging since the majority of the elderly individuals are often hospitalized and require frequent checkups compared to those who are young. Also, health care for aged individuals from ethnic minorities is quite challenging since they tend to have a higher ubiquity of immedicable ailments. Yet, they have inadequate knowledge of their health care needs.

Ultimately, the knowledge of the accessibility to healthcare services by the aged will save them from stigmatization from their families who abandon them in rural areas due to chronic diseases. With the rise in the number of older Australians and their preference to age in place, there is a need for the health service planning to concentrate more on the patients and adjustments made on the health insurance plan.

References for Policy and Practice in the Care of Older People

Health Policy Oration 2008, Menzies Centre for Health Policy, John Curtin School of Medical Research, ANU, Canberra, 26 June

Health Policy in Australia. (2015). OECD Health Policy Overview. Retrieved from www.oecd.org/health

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