It’s an old question, is healthcare a business or a right? You might have noticed that it’s cropped up against recently with the proposed healthcare bill put forward by Trump’s government that wipes out Obama Care. But which answer is correct here? You might have your own views, suggesting that healthcare is the right for all and should be free for everyone. Allow us to play devil’s advocate for the moment, pushing the argument that healthcare is, in fact, a business. There are many reasons why this is the case.
It’s An Economic Activity
The basic definition of a business is a supply of a good or service that is exchanged for money. In most cases, that’s exactly what happens in healthcare. You need to be prepared to pay to be treated as a patient. Yes, there have been cases where people receive free healthcare. The NHS in the UK is the perfect example of this. However, it could be argued that this doesn’t work as effectively as it seems. The NHS is in a mammoth amount of debt and as such is always on the brink of collapse.
For this reason, many economists believe that healthcare should never be seen as a right and should, in fact, remain a business. Yet, be a business based on the policy of providing more accessibility and ensure that patients are in charge of the healthcare system.
It Needs To Be Managed Effectively
Like any other business, health clinics, hospitals and companies need to be managed effectively. If they are not, then the company will topple under debt, due to low stock and due to poor allocation of resources. That’s why people working in healthcare who handle the finances or manage patient care often have a healthcare management MBA. You might be surprised to learn that a lot of the skills and knowledge taught here are remarkably similar to the information that you would be provided with on a business management course.
Employees Are Crucial
We have seen in the past how important the employees behind the healthcare system are. Doctors, nurses, and interns are all crucial for ensuring that a hospital functions correctly. When one group starts to strike, the whole foundation of the industry starts to weaken. If you want the best proof that healthcare is a business just look at the strikes held by interns and junior doctors. They have the power to put an immense amount of pressure on the sector when demanding better pay and a better work conditions.
Supply And Demand
The biggest problem with perceiving healthcare as a right rather than a business is that demand beats supply, particularly in America. In almost every state budget restraints mean that more people need health care than the resources available to aid them. As such, it could be argued that healthcare can never be a complete right and payment will always be involved, ensuring that it remains a business.
It would be wonderful if health care could be a right for all, but in America, this was never part of the US constitution, and the simple reason is it’s not economically feasible.