America's Future Work Force: A Health and Education Policy Issues Handbook

By Carl W. Stenberg; William G. Colman | Go to book overview
-- from the failure of community and health authorities to reach, counsel, and treat these women; and
-- from the failure of parent(s) and schools to provide effective health and guidance to avoid teenage motherhood.
Failure of communities and governments to mount effective home intervention of a multipurpose nature to assist families and children facing difficulties.
Prominent in the strictly health weaknesses are the following:
The large and growing number of the uninsured population, thus depriving millions of Americans of adequate access to the health care system.
A continuing neglect of preventive, in contrast to acute inpatient, health care.
Lagging research efforts to ascertain the most effective drug treatment modalities.
A breakdown in childhood disease immunization in the preschool years.
An organizational and procedural fragmentation of the health care delivery system, with an absence of incentives for comprehensive preventive approaches and for overhauling the malpractice tort system.
In the second category of deterrents that lengthen the odds against optimum labor force participation are these overarching factors:
A growing poverty population, underpinned by a public assistance system that has failed to provide an effective exit from welfare into work.
A disintegration of family structure, in turn raising the odds against adequate health care, educational opportunity, and labor force participation of parent(s) and children.
Parental neglect, abuse, and abandonment of children and an overloaded and chaotic system of foster care.
Deteriorating neighborhood environments, with concentrated poverty, hopelessness, homelessness, alienation, and violence.

It is clear that the nation as a whole faces a formidable array of challenges to improve the economic, financial, and organizational bases of health care and its interconnections with other human services and the private and nonprofit sectors in such a way that incentives are created to drive human behavior into more careful and responsible postures in health care. This will require the collaborative efforts of all parts of the health industry and of national, state, and local governments.


NOTES
1
U.S. General Accounting Office (GAO), U.S. Health Care Spending: Trends, Contributing Factors, and Proposals for Reform, GAO/HRD 91-102 ( Testimony of U.S. Comptroller General Charles Bowsher before the House Committee on Ways and Means, April 17, 1991). Opinion poll cited was conducted by the Employee Benefits Research Institute

-170-

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