Quality Health Care: Comparison between U.S. and Nigeria
The target of a
healthcare system is to employ healthcare, social and other resources to meet
people’s health needs within a given area (Kerleau and Pelletier-Fleury 2002).
Ideally, a healthcare system should encompass everyone, from the person who is
ill and in need of care to the paramedic who brings the person to a hospital,
from the nurses who attend to the sick person to the doctors who diagnose the
patient, from the pharmacist who dispenses drugs for the patients ‘use to the
surgeon who performs surgery on the patient (Wei et al. 2007). In many countries,
the health care system also includes the insurance agencies (social or private)
and insurers make decisions based on the type and extent of care to be
administered. Large differences in healthcare systems exist between countries. These
variations are even more evident between developed nations for example United
States of America and developing nations like Nigeria. This paper compares the
quality management structures and processes commonly found in United States
healthcare organizations with that of Nigeria’s healthcare organizations. According
to Varkey (2010), the Institute of Medicine (IOM)defines quality of care as the
degree to which health services increase the likelihood of desired health outcomes
and are consistent with current professional knowledge. The Agency for Health
Research and Quality (AHRQ) also describes quality of care as doing the right
thing at the right time for the right individual to get the best possible
results (Varkey, 2010 p.1).Avedis Donabedian created the structure, the
process, and the outcome paradigm for assessing quality in healthcare that had
profound influence than The is often thought of as the modern founder and
leader of the quality field (Varkey, 2010; Graham, 1995). This paper will base
the comparison between the quality of United States healthcare organizations
and Nigeria’s healthcare organizations on the Donabedian model. According to
Graham (1995), the structure denotes the attributes of the settings in which care
occur this include the attributes of material resources (such as facilities,
equipment, and money), of human resources (such as the number and
qualifications of personnel), and of organizational structure (such as medical
staff organization, methods of peer review, and methods of reimbursement). The
process is what is actually done in giving and receiving care which include
patient’s activities in seeking care and carrying it out as well as the
practitioner’s activities in making a diagnosis and recommending or
implementing treatment. Outcome denotes the effects of care on the health
status of patients and populations.
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