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Fragmentation in Healthcare

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Unchanged fragmentation in healthcare and the costs of integration, can it; should it happen?

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Solution Summary

Fragmentation is exemplified.

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What is fragmentation? Fragmentation is a multiple dividing of both organization and workforce into smaller categories within the healthcare organization. Within the organization, modern fragmentation consists of countless specialty centers, independent living facilities, continuous care facilities, for-profit hospitals, not-for-profit hospitals, and many more. Within the workforce we currently have countless clinicians, various degrees of nursing, specialist physicians, specialist surgeons, and countless other titles within the healthcare organization. These multiple divisions create modern day fragmentation.

For the most part, healthcare is in itself a small society. From large hospitals small walk-in clinics, health food and drug stores, home care and home medical delivery, and a vast array of service personnel from nurses and therapists to all manner of doctors. There is continuous growth as well as increased traffic resulting in increasing wait times and inefficiencies. This society has grown into a society of confusion. Healthcare integration has been on the table for a long time suggesting that such integration will ensure the individual healthcare parts work in unison thereby increasing service, treatment, and quality for the public. This type of integration would ensure that patients had community care plan went home from the hospital. This theory also reduces the duplication of different programs and ensures that competition between institutions turns to cooperation between institutions. Integration moves towards a more unified healthcare community.

The Main controversy surrounding integration versus fragmentation is that primarily it is a seemingly political impossibility. Typically conservative Republicans feel that they will lose the option to choose as they have, or end up paying more for less. The main objection of healthcare integration comes from upper-middle-class to upper-class individuals. The predominant problem is ignorance of modern day Americans in current healthcare procedures. Most of what Americans hear comes from biased television or media based information. Those supporting integration base their argument on individual rights. They stand for healthcare for all Americans. There is however much more than these simple differences that fueled the debate of fragmentation, which we will be discussing.

Should fragmentation continue at the current rate? I believe the answer to this question is quite simple given the severity of our current health care situation. If it isn't broke, don't fix it. Well it's broke! And what is broke is the current system of fragmentation within the HCO. According to Krugman "the key problem with the US healthcare system is its fragmentation."

What exactly happens if the healthcare organization continues on an unchanged fragmentation course? Well quite simply, as in any other problem, the current situation will only worsen. Medical costs will continue to rise drastically and will continue to worsen three current policy crises. The first policy that will continue to get worse is the ...

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