Healthcare consumerism and E-health

1.    Consumerism s an intriguing trend that bears a close watching in the past decade. Consumerism is a buzzword that means different things to different people with different interests. In its truest sense, consumerism is ‘’a movement seeking to protect the rights of consumers by requiring such practices as honest packaging, labeling and advertising, fair pricing and increased safety standards.’’ In health care, a consumer has come to mean a more informed participant, perhaps one who uses internet to obtain information about health, diseases and quality ratings of providers and hospitals. Defined as such, consumerism is a positive development in healthcare. However, in industry, consumerism also refers to type of health insurance plan caked a consumer directed health plan that gives the consumer more choices about how his or her insurance dollars will be spent. And in practice, this means, plainly stated, that the consumer is paying for more of health care costs. This shift in trend has largely impacted the functioning of health care professionals such as doctors and nurses – in both positive and negative way. This is a highly debatable topic and has both pros and cons to it. Pros being increased pay and better technologies to be put to service, whereas cons being decreasing number of consumers fearing increased charges.

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