Quality of Systems of Health Care as Indicated by the Efficiency of Emergency Rooms

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Healthcare in the United States is a privatized system in which insurance companies partner with patients to cover the costs of medical treatment. While it sounds simple, the system is filled with controversy. The healthcare system in the United States has many flaws leaving close to 47 million U.S. citizens completely uninsured and several million fully insured individuals struggling to find treatment (NCHC). Many countries differ from the United States in their approach to medical cost coverage. An alternative method of healthcare, socialized medicine, relies on publically funded healthcare to cover the costs of treatment. The purpose of this project is to observe, research, and analyze the efficiency of emergency rooms at different hospitals in four countries: England, Spain, Croatia, and the United States. Comparisons of medical systems were analyzed through firsthand observations, interviews, and research of public records over a three week period. The results indicate that the longest waiting period in emergency rooms occurred in Zagreb, Croatia, and the United States showed the shortest wait times, suggesting that the United States was the most efficient. While the United States does indicate the shortest waiting period,there is still an opportunity to adopt techniques from other countries to further improve the quality of service and reduce the waiting period in U.S. hospitals. By incorporating techniques from countries like England, Spain and Croatia, in addition to other countries, the. U.S. could establish an even more successful and efficient system of healthcare.


Gretchen North




The Paul & Evalyn E. Cook Richter Trusts-International Fellowship

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