Delivering healthcare amidst economic crisis
Due to the ongoing pandemic, almost all countries are suffering from the global economic recession which is characterized by a rise in unemployment or reduction in wages. A large number of studies suggest a strong correlation unemployment or low income level and decreased health in terms of mortality, mental disorders and changed eating habits like tobacco and alcohol consumption. Additionally, health spending cuts have a direct impact on healthcare professionals who are invited to provide high level of care with minimal resources. Consequently, economic constraints are likely to have a negative effect on the quality assurance in quality healthcare services.
Escalating conflict and crisis continues to place healthcare workers at great risk
- Attacks against health care workers has increased by 50% in Afghanistan
- Syria is now the deadliest place in the world for healthcare workers
Presentation of the challenges in provision of healthcare can be presented in four “A’s”-
Communication is the key skill that needs to be inculcated among professionals who will be leaders in community medicine and public health.
During difficult times like economic slowdown during the COVID-19 pandemic, optimum functioning of primary health care services should be sustained. This includes provision of healthcare through mobile clinics, community health outreach and support to existing healthcare facilities depending on availability of resources and feasibility.
The domains articulated by Health Resource Availability Mapping System (HeRAMS) encompass-
- general clinic services
- essential trauma care
- child health, including immunization and nutrition
- communicable diseases
- sexual and reproductive health
- maternal and newborn health
- non-communicable diseases
- mental health
- environmental health
These domains are imperative to save lives and reduce morbidity and suffering during the times of crisis.
Health response during crisis situation should also include-
- provision and management of shelter
- non-food items like first aid kits
- water, sanitation and hygiene
- transport assistance for affected population
- psychological assistance
The level of health and medical care must be capable of delivering quality healthcare and adequate resources, as defined by the ‘Crisis standards of care’.
Speak to our highly trained professionals to know more about provision of healthcare amidst these adverse times.
Stay home, stay safe!!!
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