Vulnerable Population Part II

Vulnerable Population Part II






Vulnerable Population Part II


Vulnerable populations in this discussion will be in reference to groups that are not fairly distributed within the health care system because of various factors such as ethnic, cultural, economic, health and geographic conditions. Members of these groups are recognized and believed to be at the risk of missing the required health care hence, the need to outline the potential health threats towards the given populace. Some examples of the vulnerable population include racial and ethnic minorities, the rural and urban poor, and individuals with disabilities or multiple chronic conditions.

The Potential Financial Impact on the Vulnerable Population

Lifestyle disparities differ very much from one society to another. For instance, ethnic and racial minorities are likely to be sidelined when it comes to the access of health care attributable to residential segregation, which separates the vulnerable populations from the supply of providers. This form of alienation can also be caused by language and cultural barriers leading to lower rates of employer-based insurance coverage for some groups. Furthermore, it is always difficult for individuals with disabilities and other chronic problems to get insurance coverage since it is uneconomical for young due to the high medical expenses (Leiyu, 2010). It is even harder for people with multiple chronic conditions to find an affordable insurance plan. Concerning poor rural residents, their isolation in noted in geographical and economical terms thereby making it hard to access expert care even in instances where they have insurance cover. Undocumented immigrants refrain from seeking health care because they are prohibited from public insurance coverage, language barriers and fear of being discovered.

In most cases, venerable populations tend to have a sense of a strong relative deprivation. In some instances, these groups of people may manage to afford better living standards because of positive financial impacts. However, a significant disparity exists between different areas, between people and among individuals. For instance, individuals in a good economic location have access to power or superior education and are therefore likely to benefit from positive financial impacts. Vulnerability tends to shorten people’s life spans because it is associated with lack of adequate finances or income, which results to poor housing, lack of enough education, poor and unhealthy eating habits and social exclusion.

A vulnerable populace stands a high chance of experiencing unconstructive financial impacts due inadequate monetary assets. Therefore, such individuals live in poorly developed houses, sometimes they live in crowded places because they cannot afford to pay for better houses, hence putting their lives at risk. Another financial impact on the vulnerable population includes poor or lack of health care because of the inability to access better health services. Therefore, the vulnerable populations especially individuals with multiple chronic conditions end up losing their lives because of lack of adequate financial breakthroughs to enable them acquire good health care services. Therefore, it can be noted that financial impacts are diverse and cause much harm to the vulnerable populace by constraining the capacity to acquire and afford basic needs.

Impacts of Changes in Age Groups, Ethnicity, Gender and Socioeconomic and Educational Levels

Vulnerable populations are susceptible to various problems that can be noted across age groups, ethnic factors, gender, socioeconomic and educational levels. Because of these changes, the vulnerable population may be less able than other groups to safeguard their own personal needs and interests. Research shows that some people from a different ethnic group or gender like women may not be able to get the same level of care in some vital circumstances as their male or other racial group counterparts. Individuals from particular cultures or ethnicities tend to be provided with less quality care in comparison to other cultural groups. Changes in age groups also cause people to acquire a state of vulnerability attributed to the fact that the elderly people tend to be sickly than younger individuals and consequently leading to high expenses in terms of treatment.

On the other hand, vulnerability in children groups stems from their differences as compared to adults in terms of health needs. For instance, children are not accorded great attention and thus the sectors dealing with providing health care services to the group are poorly equipped. Additionally, children with disabilities are undoubtedly at a certain disadvantage. Impacts of changes in socioeconomic status of the vulnerable population may be either positive or negative. Individuals with better living standards among the vulnerable population benefit a lot because they are well positioned to overcome some challenges such as poor lifestyles, illiteracy and are able to rank themselves in a different social level. Education levels also influence the vulnerable level because the more individuals are educated, the greater their chances of obtaining employment hence improving their lifestyles.

Health Care Service Needs, such as Acute care, Long-term Care, Nursing Home, Home Health and Hospice

According to research, particular groups within the population are more vulnerable to health care quality problems through differences in the health system or increased burden of poor health. These groups include individuals in need of acute care and long-term care, comprising of the poor, uninsured, elderly, children, racial and ethnic minorities and terminally ill patients or those with disabilities. Vulnerabilities facing the groups have resulted from various factors such as economic, geographic location, health, functional or developmental statuses. Financial status and geographic location can be a great obstacle to receiving the needed health care hence leading to increased exposure to health risks.

Individuals lacking insurances and those living in rural settings stand a high risk of experiencing barriers to access the required health services. Some people are vulnerable because the nature or severity of their illness or disability requires special care. For instance, some patients or ailments may require home care or long-term attention thus lack of enough resources may make it hard to receive such services. Vulnerable populations may find it difficult to use the healthcare system including the discontinuity and lack of coordination among different providers, inability to get attention from expert health care providers in attending to their illnesses and difficulties in receiving approval for treatments that are expensive or scarcely stocked.

The Funding Process Used to Assist the Vulnerable Population

Before the group is funded, various factors have to be put into consideration including the complexity of social factors such as poverty, education, and housing. These factors are considered in order to know how they affect health as well as establish the necessary solutions within the given group. Therefore, the funds should be awarded to diverse innovative programs that focus on the long-standing health issues through sensible sustainable solutions bearing the capacity of a national impact (Institute of Medicine, 1996). Various models have been developed in order to tackle challenges that are most of the time unsolved such as the fear of street violence, loneliness instances in nursing homes, among others.

The System Impact due to Vulnerable Population

A good number of people especially Americans have accepted the idea that there is a critical need for delivering systems especially in health care in order to ensure that every person gets access to quality care that deals with personal needs and prioritizes primary care and prevention. A reform process in the system is necessary in enabling vulnerable members with in accessing the services. This implies that if the system is improved and made affordable to the vulnerable population, then it can be accessed by a wider populace in the given nation. Therefore, recognizing present health care systems accords an impact on both vulnerable populations and on the Medicare programs. Vulnerable individuals are affected through the delivery system as it leads to economic decline and hence high rates of poverty in the country. This affects the human resource base and therefore influencing negatively on the delivery system.

Issues and Challenges of the Vulnerable Population

Vulnerable groups encounter great issues and challenges like inadequate housing. This is because the low-income households and families reside in inexpensive homes that are less able to withstand disasters. Low-income earners live mostly in rental house where the proprietor focuses on short-term financial imperatives hence being reluctant to take action in property protection and thus exposing the individuals to various problems (Aday, 2001). Most vulnerable populations are not in a position to undertake loss prevention and preparedness measures without monetary assistance.

Potential solutions include developing appropriate mitigation measures and other important programs that can help improve the lives of the affected individuals in all aspects. The government and other respective agencies should develop strategies that can help vulnerable populations from their inadequacy positions. This could be though the provision of education programs and training opportunities, creating health facilities that are accessible and affordable and improving various infrastructures in the rural areas as a way of opening opportunities to the isolated people. Through this, the vulnerable population will acquire a higher wellbeing.

The United States health care system stands a great risk if the rates of the vulnerable population continues to rise at 2 -3 % over the next five years as patient protection and the affordable care Act of 2010 is enacted. This is because as the rate of vulnerable population increases the health care system is affected because of much pressure on the available health care facilities (American Public Health Association, 2000). This should be viewed from the perspective of the rising needs in health services. Dealing with chronic conditions such as cancer, hypertension and diabetes are very expensive to the healthcare system. It is important for the government to acquire an economical package towards the same.


Aday, L. (2001).At risk in America: the health and health care needs of vulnerable populations in the United States. New York, NY: John Wiley and Sons.

American Public Health Association. (2000).American journal of public health, Volume 90, Issues 7-12. New York, NY: American Public Health Association.

Institute of Medicine. (1996). Paying Attention to Children in a Changing Health Care System. Washington, DC: National Academy Press.

Leiyu, S. (2010). Vulnerable Populations in the United States. New York, NY: John Wiley and Sons.

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