Economics is a complex phenomenon that impacts health and healthcare in many different ways. The economy plays a critical role in setting the standard for healthcare costs, along with the necessity to reform healthcare as it currently stands because these costs have become unaffordable for most consumers (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 2009). For employers who sponsor healthcare coverage, the economy establishes the tone for the premiums that employers require their employees to contribute for this insurance (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 2009). Therefore, the economy drives healthcare costs and insurance providers’ level of coverage and employer support of these offerings for their workers (Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, 2009).
The economy also plays a significant role in healthcare spending from the perspective of information technology, which continues to expand in scope and level of advancement to improve efficiency in healthcare, but not without a substantial cost to the end user (NCR, 2013). Therefore, these costs must be continuously evaluated and adjusted in order to achieve effective outcomes for consumers (NCR, 2013). In addition, the economy has a significant impact on how healthcare spending is determined, particularly when periods of economic decline are in full force (Chen, 2009). This is an important and challenging process that requires significant attention and understanding in order to reduce the economic out of pocket impact for the end user (Chen, 2009).
The nation’s economy has a significant influence on healthcare spending and the quality of healthcare that is provided to patients. As the economy improves or declines, healthcare spending is impacted and may lead to an increased cost burden for many patients, as well as employers. It is important to develop a greater understanding of this impact and how it leads to positive and negative outcomes for the healthcare system that will influence consumers in different ways.
NCR (2013). The economy’s impact on healthcare IT spending: hospital leaders retrench for a continuing recession. Retrieved from
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (2009). Issue brief: impact of the economy on health care. Retrieved from http://www.academyhealth.org/files/HCFO/findings0809.pdf