Health Of Children  Essay Assignment Paper

Health Of Children  Essay Assignment Paper

Health Of Children  Essay Assignment Paper

Children are vital to the nation’s present and its future. Parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles are usually committed to providing every advantage possible to the children in their families, and to ensuring that they are healthy and have the opportunities that they need to fulfill their potential. Yet communities vary considerably in their commitment to the collective health of children and in the resources that they make available to meet children’s needs. This is reflected in the ways in which communities address their collective commitment to children, specifically to their health.Health Of Children Research Paper

In recent years, there has been an increased focus on issues that affect children and on improving their health. Children have begun to be recognized not only for who they are today but for their future roles in creating families, powering the workforce, and making American democracy work. Mounting evidence that health during childhood sets the stage for adult health not only reinforces this perspective, but also creates an important ethical, social, and economic imperative to ensure that all children are as healthy as they can be. Healthy children are more likely to become healthy adults.

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Within this context, it is reasonable to ask what it means for children to be healthy and whether the United States is adequately assessing and monitoring the health of its children. Do available surveillance and monitoring approaches provide the information necessary to ensure that common priorities and shared resources are aligned with children’s needs and deployed to optimize their health? Are there ways to improve methods to better guide policies and practices designed to make children healthier? This report addresses these questions.Health Of Children Research Paper

Children are generally viewed as healthy when they are assessed by adult standards, and there has been a great deal of progress in reducing childhood death and diseases. But the country should not be blinded by these facts—several indicators of children’s health point to the need for further improvement, children in the United States do not fare as well as their European counterparts on many aspects of health, and there are marked disparities in health among children in the United States. Recent improvements in children’s health need to be sustained and further efforts are needed to optimize it. To accomplish this, the nation must have an improved understanding of the factors that affect health and effective strategies for measuring and using information on children’s health. This chapter starts with what is known about the health of children. It then moves to a discussion of why measuring children’s health is important. The chapter concludes with an examination of why critical differences between children and adults establish the need for children’s health to be held to a standard different from that used for adults.

The United States has the most sophisticated and advanced medical care in the world, attracting people from around the globe for treatment of complex and difficult health conditions. The extent to which individuals living in this country benefit from this care, however, depends to a great degree on whether they have health insurance. Studies consistently show that persons without health insurance are far less likely to use health services than those with health insurance. In addition, the number of people without health insurance is on the rise, providing more cause for concern. More than 42 million Americans under the age of sixty-five were completely uninsured in 1999.Health Of Children Research Paper

While children’s access to care is a function of a wide range of factors, including family characteristics and the organization of the health system, financial barriers such as lack of health insurance play a significant role. Health insurance is by far the most important predictor of whether children will receive needed health care. Uninsured children receive fewer aggregate annual physician visits than their insured counterparts, and they are significantly less likely than publicly insured poor children to identify a usual source of routine care.

Despite the predominant role of health insurance in access to health care, sizable numbers of children in this country are uninsured. While no age group is immune from the threat of losing health insurance, children make up a significant proportion of the uninsured. In 1999, 10 million children, nearly 14 percent of all children in the United States, were uninsured.Health Of Children Research Paper

The Importance of Access

Most children are healthy. Some may ask, therefore, why it is important for children to have access to health care. In fact, despite relatively good health, children do need access to regular health care, as well as access to special services when acute or chronic conditions occur. Moreover, children are distinct from other age groups in several important ways. For one thing, they are entirely dependent on their adult caregivers for health services. Children are incapable of making decisions about health care, purchasing services or insurance, or making judgments about the appropriateness of services. Children are also unable to voice preferences or to influence decisions made on their behalf. Thus, it is the responsibility of adults to represent their interests and to ensure that their needs are met.

Children’s health needs are also significantly different from those of adults. By nature, children grow and develop at rapid rates, placing them at special risk of being affected by illness and injury. If health problems are not identified and treated, they can affect a child’s cognitive, physical, behavioral, and emotional development. It is therefore essential to identify and treat health conditions early to prevent or minimize the impact on overall growth and development.Health Of Children Research Paper

Finally, the type, severity, and frequency of health conditions that children experience also differ from adults. Children generally experience a wider variety of health problems, but of less severity. Conversely, adults are more likely to have chronic degenerative conditions than children. But certain childhood conditions, though relatively mild in single instances, have the capacity to lead to long-term disabilities in children. For example, chronic oti tis media (ear infections), if unchecked, can lead to hearing loss, and possibly learning disabilities. Other rare but severe conditions, such as spina bifida and sickle cell disease, manifest themselves early and require ongoing monitoring and expensive, tertiary care.

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