Public hospitals in many crowded areas in the world have become severely overloaded. Wealthy patients, who have the option to pay more for private hospital services, often need to go to public hospitals for important surgeries because only here they can find the best doctors in the field. The problem: poor patients "get cut in line" while waiting for treatments. The wealthy have the means and the connections to bribe hospital staff to "buy" hospital services without staying in line. Some argue "it is survival; when it comes to the matter of life and death, people will do the selfish and unethical things for themselves and for the ones they love."
Present your perspective on this issue, using relevant reasons and/or examples to support your views, and if possible, offer the solutions.
public hospitals and patients financial status
The more civilized and modern the society is, the more the implications are. Beside many social evils such as gambling and drinking or prostitution, the decadence of human moral is an alarming phenomenon! This report will analyse unethical behaviors and tricks of the rich to get good care in public hospitals.
Indeed, public hospitals in many crowded areas in the world have become severely overloaded. Wealthy patients, who have the option to pay more for private hospital services, often need to go to public hospitals for important surgeries because only here they can find the best doctors in the field. Having the means and the connections, they bribe hospital staffs to "buy" hospital services without staying in line. It is important to realize that the poor can not afford bribes or private alternatives. Power - powerless and rich - poor determine access to aid. Those who lack power and money can not safeguard their rights. Public health services are things which are very "luxurious" for the poor.
This unfair phenomenon happens not only in developed countries but also in developing ones. For instance, in China, some patients and their family members offer "red envelopes" that contain cash to doctors before surgery to ensure better care during and after procedures. From a qualitative study conducted from 2010 to 2011 by Towards Transparency - the official national contact of Transparency International in Viet Nam and the Research and Training Centre for Community Development, most of the surveyed healthcare workers said that they did not ask for such unofficial payments, but the payment could change their attitude to patients, as treating them in a more friendly manner. The study also finds that offering cash directly and in envelopes are the most common ways of making informal payments in the healthcare services. Other forms include gifts and "opportunities" in other services (applications for housing, education, goods purchasing) offered by patients or their relatives. Values of the payments range from VND50,000 (US$2.5) to VND5 million ($250) or even up to several thousand US dollars, depending on levels and location of the hospitals. Especially, there is a specific list of public healthcare services in Greece: from 100 to 30,000 EUR for procedure or surgery and from 30 to 20,000 EUR for speeding up case!
Some argue: "It is survival; when it comes to the matter of life and death, people will do the selfish and unethical things for themselves and for the ones the love." Generally, the nature of human is "cling to life and fear death". People of course will do everything to lengthen their life or their beloved relatives lives. However, the problem here is the way someone do. People do not act in a civilized manner, in accordance with the rules. The rich rely on their money and power to meet demand, even if it is irrational and unfair! Let's imagine that rules or regulations will have no effect if people do not comply in one or other ways. Would the society be like if the poor are always bullied? People are living in the 21st century, the era of civilization and justice, not the feudal era! The unfairness in the job or in the social status is controversial issue, but injustice in healthcare is really painful and urgent. Human life is not a joke, so can not be disregarded. Moreover, people who work in health sector ought to also alert the dominant material so as not to abet incorrect behaviors. No matter how selfish and unreasonable the rich are, they can not "get cut in line". Perhaps considerate healthcare services will be given, but "get cut in line" is a bad thing. In case of emergency, the other patient's life will be threatened. The boundary between life and death is always very fragile. Life can be saved or lost only by one second.
In fact, in September 2012, China's Ministry of Health has ordered patients and hospitals to sign a document agreeing that no bribes will be offered or accepted by the two parties. The document asked public hospitals to strengthen control and supervision of administrative power and practices of medical workers. They also urged a timely and effective curb of doctors' receiving "red envelopes" or kickbacks and prescribing unnecessary medicine as well as overcharging patients. On the other hand, President of the Viet Nam's Paediatric Association Nguyen Thu Nhan said that: ""Envelope culture" in the sector would not stop unless there was a proper salary for healthcare staff." Meanwhile, President of the Viet Nam Obstetric Association Nguyen Duc Vy said: "In the anti-corruption fight, high determination of hospital leadership and stricter punishments are crucial." Beside, in 2010, Greece promised to reorganize its health system to increase use of cheaper generic drugs and reduce waste. Some of those methods also helped curb corruption, including an electronic system to prevent fake prescriptions, eliminating under-the-counter-payments in hospital and making it easier to sanction doctors who did not follow the rules.
In short, the bad sides in public hospitals are indeed a knotty problem. Hence, the government and the authorities should set out the further practical measures to remedy the situation, as well as shorten the gap between the rich and the poor so that everyone can have the benefits equally. Man was born to love and to help each other. Therefore, people should not ever do things that hurt others, whether for interests of yourself or your beloved ones's. Life is always fair: Happiness is giving away, not stealing!