The Evolution of Healthcare Industry

Junior (College 3rd year) ・Healthcare&Medicine ・APA ・2 Sources

Provision of healthcare services has evolved rapidly. There is an increase in demand for safer, efficient and equitable care (Kolstad & Kowalski, 2012). Staff members are continually evolving in their responsibilities allowing for cheaper care and more specialization. Physicians have expanded into different specialties with new discoveries of equipment to cater for the growth. The industry has evolved from the standard pay-for-services to pay-for-outcome kind of model (Baicker, Chernew, & Robbins, 2013). Among the social drivers is the patient empowerment. Patients are more empowered with greater access to information than before. It has helped to shape their decisions of where they are going to receive treatment. They are now involved in the decision-making process relating to their ailments (Kolstad & Kowalski, 2012). In return, hospitals have acted by ensuring the provision of quality health care. Consumers have shifted their preferences to hospitals that demonstrate their successes in delivering required medical procedures (Kolstad & Kowalski, 2012).

Business concerns such as cost cutting and process optimization have changed hospital care. Hospitals are working hard to increase their efficiency by reducing preventable readmissions. Issues that damage organizational image such as discrimination in hospitals based on racial, religious or gender grounds that was rampant in the 20th century have ceased (Baicker et al., 2013). Hospital stays have been reduced. Procedures such as hernia correction which used to take days are now done on an outpatient basis owing to technological advancements (Kolstad & Kowalski, 2012). Besides cultural beliefs and values, many factors that have led to change in health care demand are rooted in economic trends (Kolstad & Kowalski, 2012). The growth in population in addition to an increase in the elderly has resulted in an increase in the demand for health care providers.

Chronic diseases that are on the rise are placing a need for health care services which has huge cost impacts. Advances in medical technology, as well as dependence on drugs and pharmaceuticals, has increased health care spending (Baicker et al., 2013). The rise in medical care insurance costs has been tremendous. Lawsuits tagged on medical malpractice have increased the prices of malpractice insurance (Baicker et al., 2013). The current health care system has evolved significantly. The evolution is a response to the economic, social and business changes. Providers of health care should collaborate with other pertinent stakeholders to keep up with ever-changing societal demands.


Baicker, K., Chernew, M. E., & Robbins, J. A. (2013). The spillover effects of Medicare managed care: Medicare Advantage and hospital utilization. Journal of health economics, 32(6), 1289-1300.

Kolstad, J. T., & Kowalski, A. E. (2012). The impact of health care reform on hospital and preventive care: evidence from Massachusetts. Journal of Public Economics, 96(11), 909-929.

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