Frontline Sick Around The World

This film was illustrating the various types of healthcare systems around the world in a comparative look with the United States healthcare system. It takes the biomedical perspective of healthcare as professional physicians are the main healers of the video. The video examines healthcare systems in Great Britain, Taiwan, Germany, Switzerland, and Japan, contrasting how each system has advantages and disadvantages in universal healthcare. It seems that universal healthcare in each country had a positive effect with all the patients as each patient was more eager and motivated to see physicians and stay in better health. There were setbacks to the physicians themselves as some of them such as the ones in Japan and Germany did not receive as high of incomes and at times were under budget for certain products necessary for the hospital. In some of the countries such as Britain, there were incentives to keep your patients healthy, involving bonuses or more income per healthy patients. Switzerland used restricted prices for hospitals to charge their patients, keeping benefits for everyone the same price. Taiwan used many of the beneficial aspects of other countries healthcare systems to create their own unique system where everyone receives health smart cards, including all health history of each patient. This, combined with minimal waiting time to see physicians proved to be quite effective.

The healers in this case are the physicians who take care of all of their patients in their designated hospital. They have varying social status’, however most of them are relatively well paid and are at a good socioeconomic status as well. They engage in similar techniques as in the United States however, elective care (hip replacements, transplants) in the United Kingdom are not as good although there are still many other aspects of health care that is very effective. The interaction between physicians and their patients in these countries using universal healthcare seems to be similar between all of them in that the patients seem more adamant on visiting a doctor regularly, and with minimal costs, typically.

Most of these universal healthcare systems have a more interpersonal relationship, demonstrating more time with patients as well as less waiting time and fees which ease anxieties of visiting a hospital and physician. The cultures vary, however most of these countries view the system as a necessary entity for a well constructed community and feel that everyone is entitled to health treatment. The symptoms of patients are looked at quite different than the United States as we wait for symptoms to come about and these countries attempt to prevent most symptoms from happening, keeping patients healthier and less likely to suffer chronic illnesses.

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  1. phill612 says:

    In the documentary of Sick around the World the healers in question are biomedical doctors that practice Western views of medicine. However, different countries have their own view of public healthcare and keeping their population as healthy as possible in accordance with this system. In the United States healthcare is an industry where large amounts of money can be made. To become doctors in the United States people must go through rigorous schooling and pay increasing tuition bills for a high end education. Doctors are among the social elite in the United States which is not the case in many other countries. This affects the healthcare system because prices for doctor visits, surgeries, medications and various procedures are considerably more expensive than other countries. This creates a discrepancy in healthcare in which not every person in the nation can afford because healthcare coverage is the responsibility of the individual. In Germany for example everyone is covered but they have a choice between private insurers or governmental based ones for those who cannot afford it. Premiums are paid and universal across the country. Here doctors are paid well but not as much as the US. In Germany there is no cost for undergraduate studies or medical school. Many other countries have similar systems in place that cover everyone equally. No system is perfect but each has legitimate and qualified physicians that treat patients according to their explanatory model and healthcare system. In the US not everyone has access to care based on personal funds in other countries the hospitals are unable to obtain certain products or equipment because of lack funds. It is unfortunate that health is a commodity but that is the society in which we adhere by and I believe that just because the United States isn’t the healthiest country based on expenditure doesn’t mean the physicians are not qualified professionals.

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