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Ensuring access to treatment from an ethical perspective

Ensuring access to treatment from an ethical perspective Purpose – The allocation of resources is a complex problem in health care. In Finland there has been an effort to solve the problems with a program called “Securing the Future of Health Care”. The main focus of this research is on assessing how managers view the health care policy called guarantee of care from an ethical perspective. Design/methodology/approach – The theoretical basis of the research covers theories regarding rationing, prioritization, as well as the ethics of health care. The empirical data were gathered through an internet questionnaire. The questionnaires were sent to the top managers in all Finnish health care districts (20 in all). The data were analyzed qualitatively. Findings – According to respondents, ensuring access to treatment partially fulfilled the ethical principles of the right to good care, respect for human dignity, fairness, and co‐operation and mutual respect quite well. On the other hand, trust, impressiveness, non‐partiality in decision making and the right of self‐determination were not as well realized. The shortening of waiting lists had caused exhaustion and motivation problems among personnel and in addition, staff shortages were being experienced. Originality/value – The administrators of the hospital districts agreed that centralizing resources as a reconstructive action is ethically wrong for the whole health care system. There is a great need for an ethical discussion concerning the choices made in health care policy. Long‐term results need sustainable solutions. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Leadership in Health Services Emerald Publishing

Ensuring access to treatment from an ethical perspective

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References (31)

Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2009 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
1751-1879
DOI
10.1108/17511870910978150
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – The allocation of resources is a complex problem in health care. In Finland there has been an effort to solve the problems with a program called “Securing the Future of Health Care”. The main focus of this research is on assessing how managers view the health care policy called guarantee of care from an ethical perspective. Design/methodology/approach – The theoretical basis of the research covers theories regarding rationing, prioritization, as well as the ethics of health care. The empirical data were gathered through an internet questionnaire. The questionnaires were sent to the top managers in all Finnish health care districts (20 in all). The data were analyzed qualitatively. Findings – According to respondents, ensuring access to treatment partially fulfilled the ethical principles of the right to good care, respect for human dignity, fairness, and co‐operation and mutual respect quite well. On the other hand, trust, impressiveness, non‐partiality in decision making and the right of self‐determination were not as well realized. The shortening of waiting lists had caused exhaustion and motivation problems among personnel and in addition, staff shortages were being experienced. Originality/value – The administrators of the hospital districts agreed that centralizing resources as a reconstructive action is ethically wrong for the whole health care system. There is a great need for an ethical discussion concerning the choices made in health care policy. Long‐term results need sustainable solutions.

Journal

Leadership in Health ServicesEmerald Publishing

Published: Jul 17, 2009

Keywords: Ethics; Health services; Resource management; Medical care; Finland

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