According to Duckett, (2010), Person-centered care is a process whereby the health providers select the method of offering treatment to patients based on the needs, characteristics, and values of the specific patients. This, therefore, indicates that methods of delivering treatments to patients should differ based on the location of the patient and the specific belief system of that specific culture to ensure that the patient is at the center of healthcare, (Duckett, 2010). One can, therefore, realize that person-centered care is one of the most important aspects of healthcare and is hence used as one of the major indicators of quality healthcare. This paper discusses the various ways in which the Australian workforce policy affects the delivery of person-centered care to Australian citizens by the Healthcare Workforce.
The major problem facing densely populated and developed counties such as Australia is the uneven distribution of doctors across different geographical areas with a high number of doctors in urban centers and few in rural centers, (Eagar, 2001). This limits access to primary care and medical care for individuals in rural areas. In curbing this, Australia has implemented policies to solve this problem. One of the policies implemented by Australia in the policy targeting the selection of medical students based on their location. This law is based on the basis that students from rural areas are more likely to practice in the rural setting of their origin as compared to students from urban centers who are more likely to practice in the urban centers, (Eagar, Garrett & Lin, 2011). In this policy, the government has set a minimum number of students that should be admitted to learning institutions as medical students.
In the first place, by enacting this law, the government has been able to increase the number of doctors in most underserved areas especially rural areas, (Eagar, 2011). By increasing the ratio of doctors to patients in these areas, patients have been able to receive quality services from health centers. This move has also greatly improved on efficiency as compared to the latter days. The improved services in these centers have enhanced person-centered care to the patients, (Duckett, 2010).
Secondly, since the medical doctors employed in the rural areas are also residents, they are well versed with the belief systems of the individuals living in these areas hence they can serve them within the required value systems, (Eagar, 2011). This factor has greatly improved the ability of the healthcare workforce to provide quality, person-centered care to patients, (Duckett, 2010). In addition to this, these medical practitioners are well versed in the people’s expectations in the rural areas hence able to address their challenges effectively.
In conclusion, among the many policies enacted by the Australian government in the quest to improve the quality of medical service to its citizen, the policy mentioned above has greatly improved on both the quality and person-centered care to rural area residents, (Duckett, 2010). Although this policy has not completely improved the ability of health institutions to offer quality, person-centered services to patients, it has set healthcare institutions ready for flight.
Duckett, S. J. (2010). Structural interests and Australian health policy. Social Science & Medicine, 18(11), 959-966.
Eagar, K., Garrett, P., & Lin, V. (2011). Health planning: Australian perspectives. Crows Nest, NSW: Allen & Unwin.