Different Perspective to Health Care Access in Rural Kentucky


Legislative Approach to Enhancing Access to Proper Healthcare

USA health acre landscape

There are only 10% of the physician’s practitioners in America rural in spite of the fact that about 25% of the USA population live in rural areas.  90% of physicians operate in America urban areas. In the USA there 40.1 specialists per 100, 000 population compared to 134.1 specialists in urban areas (NRHA, 2015). 18% of the rural population in the USA are aged 65yeras and older compared to 15% of the urban areas. There is a low level of employment in rural areas compared to urban areas with per capita income in rural areas been $19K compared to $26K of the urban and the population living below the poverty in rural makes 14% while in urban they are 11% and nearly 24% of the children in rural areas living in poverty (NRHA, 2015).

According to NRHA (2015), 28% of the rural adults describes the health status as poor compared to 21% in the urban areas. Some risky behaviors such as smoking are high in rural areas with 19% of the adolescents being smokers in these areas compared to 11% in the urban areas. 64% of the rural population are covered with health insurance compared to 69% of the urban. Compared to the USA average Medicare spends per capital is 85% in rural areas and 106% in urban areas. There are a slightly low number of people covered by the Medicaid in rural areas (45%) compared to urban areas (49%) (Reinhard, et al., 2015).

Kentucky Health Care Overview

In Kentucky, 1,838,536 people live in the rural area out of a population of 4,413,457 people.  In Kentucky, there are 187 Rural Health Clinics. 13% of the residents in Kentucky lack health insurance, with the average capital in rural areas being $30K compared to $36K of the urban areas. The poverty rate in the Kentucky rural areas is 23.4%, compared to 15.6% of the urban areas. The level of unemployment in the rural Kentucky is 7.7% compared to 5.8% of the urban areas (RHIH, 2015).USA spends about 15% of its GDP on health care, which makes health care the biggest single sector of the USA economy (Feldstein, 2011). Despite this, people living in rural areas of Kentucky have over the years faced health care disparity mainly caused by lack of health insurance, low financial resources, structural barriers, and a low number of health care facilities (Harris, 2013).

Existing Legislation

The enactment and implementation of The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and various federal mandates have an effect on the landscape of health care quality and access (Rosenbaum, 2011). Despite these measures, there is still a problem of little or no access to health care, and struggling with transportation to get to their providers by the low-income families in rural communities in Kentucky. These families have little or no access to proper healthcare, and when they gain access, they have to go for long distances in order to get to these providers (Hatcher et al., 2011).

Equality legislation

This problem can be solved by enacting legislation that will mandate the state and federal governments ensure they have provided health care services to the rural community in the Kentucky region. The legislation should…………………

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