IntroductionThe study andrelevance of health economics has majorly grown over the years. Due to the important developments inthe field of science, with respect to developing technology, health economicshas risen to the limelight. The World Health organisation (WHO) states healtheconomics is concerned with the connection between health and the resourcesneeded to promote it. Resources here just do not involve money but also people,materials, time, which could have otherwise been used in different ways. (WHOwebsite).
While authors like (Morrisey and Cawley 2008) state health economicsis defined by who health economists are and what they do. They examined thefield of Health economics and those that shape the discipline.The Book the economics of Health and healthcare (Folland et al. 2016) captures the relevance of health economic. Theycapture the national policy concerns resulting from people concerns in theeconomic problems faced by them while maintaining their health and how many ofthese health issues have a substantial economic problem. While there are somany ways of analysing the economical aspect of health and so many elements anddivisions of health and health care sector, the paper focuses on mainly thecultural background, also covering race and ethnicity of a doctor in themedical field. Every human being in this world is prone to certain diseases,health issues and thus the need to visit a doctor to cure his or her ailment isa must, even if it incurs expenses, as without good health, we cannot survivein the long run.The criteria by which patients really choosetheir doctors is still something which needs to be studied in detail.
There aremany definitions of race, some which specifically state ‘race’, denotes a, ‘amore or less distinct group by genetically transmitted physical characteristics'(American Heritage Dictionary) Similarly, the word ‘ethnicity´, is defined as’pertaining to a social group within a cultural social system that claims or isaccorded special status on the basis on complex, traits including religious,ancestral or physical characteristics’ (American Heritage Dictionary of EnglishLanguage). While there are many studies of cross cultural physician – patientrelationships, there are also specific proofs of racial differences in TheUnited States of America with white patients who seem to get better treatmentsfrom their doctors then compared to minority or Black community. The beliefthat a community will be more comfortable in consulting doctors of their owncommunity is something which still needs to be backed by empirical results andunderstanding. The country of origin of the doctors has aninfluence on students` choice if they need to visit a doctorThispaper focuses on the research question, ‘Thecountry of origin of the doctors has an influence on students` choice if theyneed to visit a doctor’.
The experiment is centered around threecommunities namely the German community, Polish community and the IndianCommunity. The aim is to see how does origin of a doctors (his ethnicity,community or cultural competence) really influences the patient’s choice, herebeing ‘students’ in selecting a doctor. The notion that a student may prefer adoctor from his or her own community holds true except, this might not beentirely true. The psychology of the mind works in different ways.
There can becircumstances where there is no option but to just perform the operation withthe best doctor in the field and hence does origin, really matter in that case?All this will be further explained as we move further in this research paper. . Onwhat basis do patients really choose their doctors is still debatable, the factthat it could be based on the origin, the race or ethnicity cannot be ruledout. Cultural competence of a doctor can also be the reason why a patient wantsto be consulted by him or her. The American Medical Association (AMA) has itsown Cultural Competence Compendium, in which it defines culture as ‘any groupof people who share experience, languages and values that permit them tocommunicate knowledge not shared by those outside the culture.’ The AMA alsostates that ‘Culturally competent physicians are able to provide patientcentred care by adjusting their attitudes and behaviours to account for theimpact of emotional, cultural, social, and psychological issues on the ailment'(American Medical Association) Hence, it is notable that given a doctor’sbackground or history the patient might make a better rapport with him and thedoctor may also be more supportive in making the patient feel more comfortable.InAmerica racial discrimination has a history. Efforts to increase the differentethnicity of doctors have been a focus, whether it is the African Americandoctors or the Hispanic doctors (Thomas and Amani 2002) The underlying factbeing the minority will be represented by them or through them.
With theconstant efforts, Medical schools have responded to the proposition byincreasing the production of minority doctors pass outs. (Carlisle et al. 1998;Libby et al.
1997). (Cooper- Patrick et al. 1999) in their research studyconducted a telephonic survey, of 1816 African Americans and white adults, thepatients selected were those which recently took part in the care practice andthey were taken to analyse and assess the doctor patient decision makingparticipatory style.
The results showed patients who are give more importanceto race have rated their physicians more participatory than compared topatients who are not such big believers of raceAsimilar area of inquiry where, patients believe that race play an importantrole can be seen in the experiment conducted were patients choose theirhealthcare providers according to race. National Medical Expenditure Survey conducted by (Gray and Stoddard1997) concluded the fact that patients from minority community choose doctorsbelonging to that minority community.(Saha et al. 2000) further demonstratedthat Black, White and Hispanic choose doctors of their own race because oftheir own personal preference and comfort and not just because they werelimited doctors in that field. The theory that minority of doctors willpractice in their own minority communities has also been well documented (Moyand Bartman 1995) (Sahaet al.
1999) also found that African American race concordant people are morelike to rate their physicians as the best or excellent rated. While there aresome researchers like (Chen et al. 2001) who were not able to find any race orcultural differentiation in the field cardiac catheterization. (Litt and Cuskey1998) focused on the satisfaction aspect of meeting a doctor.
Their studiesshowed adolescents who reported higher satisfaction after an initial visit with the doctor are more likelyto go back to the doctor for a follow up appointment as compared to anunsatisfied patient in the first visit. Subsequent studies have also showedthat patient satisfaction and appointment keeping have showed the same resultsconfirming this theory and relationship (Fred et al. 1998, Carlson and Gabriel2001, Ivanov and Flynn 1999) While patients may choose physicians from theirown race the outcome of the service provided and how successful is it, is stillsomething which needs more research. Althoughthe empirical studies show a direct effect on the doctors and patients raceconcordance on patient outcomes is limited, the patient’s satisfaction on health-relatedoutcomes do also have an impact. As stated by (Scanlon et al. 2001;Harris-Kojetin et al. 2001; Cleary and McNeil 1988; Mukamel and Mushlin 2001;Simon and Monroe 2001) in the surveys of healthcare quality assessments andhealth care system performance, patient satisfaction is widely considered and akey competence.
Individual healthcare customers and employees use satisfactionratings as an aid to choose health care plans and providers (Crofton, Lubalin,and Darby 1999). Intercultural communication between thepatient and the doctor influences the satisfaction level of the patients.According to a survey by (The Department of General Practice, ErasmusUniversity, Rotterdam, The Netherlands) there have been problems in communicationbetween the health care workers and ethnic- minority people which leads toincorrect diagnoses, non-compliance with the treatment and thus not proper useof health services. They also state that although there is not more known causeof communication problems, but it is always not the language problem, but itsalso the cultural difference on how people think about the health, disease andhealth care. The health beliefs of the western physicians are normally shapedby their own cultural background and their biomedical and training but the healthbeliefs of people of other cultures are not similar with those of the Western healthcare workers and hence the risk of misunderstanding arises.Whilethere are so many diseases which can affect a human body, the research paperfocuses on common cold as the reason of going to the doctor. The common cold orinfluenza (flu) is one of the most common disease in the world.
In the book,The Lancet Infectious Diseases, the author (Eccles 2005) states that the commoncold is the most common infection affecting the human being. This diseasemainly being based on symptomatology, however the ability to understand all thesymptoms is still poor for a common man, then compared to a doctor having alook at them. (Eccles 2005) all mentions that with so many viruses in the air,when a simple cold can transform into something more dangerous, is not known.Hence common cold should be treated with care. The hypothesis, The country oforigin of the doctors has an influence on students choice of the doctor willnow be examined in this paper.References Folland,S., Goodman, A. C.
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