Health Systems Between The USA, UK & Australia Essay


Discuss about the Health Systems between the Usa, Uk and Australia.



With the advancement of technology the overall life expectancy of common people significantly increased. Thus the degree of progression of a country can be gauged by the advancement of their health care system. In this assignment, a comparative assessment of healthcare system is done among Australia, the United States of America and Britain. The key objective of this assignment is to scrutinize the cost, accessibility, choice and quality of the healthcare system in the contextual countries. The goal of this assignment is to gauge the efficiency of each country in managing their health care system. The advantages and disadvantages lie within the health care system of Australia, the United States of America and Britain is also assessed. The scopes of improvement are also identified here with putting stress in the Australian system. At the beginning of the assignment, a separate analysis is done in between the given countries. Finally, at the concluding portion, a comparative analysis is shown with the help of charts, graphs and tables. The assignment is ended by proffering advantages of each country with the other while putting stress on the Australian system.



Cost: The health expenditure in Australia is calculated as 140.2 billion Dollars which is 9.5 per cent of gross domestic product or GDP of the entire country. Furthermore, 70 per cent of the total costs of the healthcare system is funded by the government with the help of taxpayers’ money (Mukherjee, 2008).
Access: Though the health care system in Australia is good but it's expensive and due to this reason, out of pocket costs stop people receiving care (Davis et al. 2014). Actually, what happens in Australia's health care system is called co-payment process where the patients also pay which is almost 20 per cent of the total cost. However, sometimes, the patient’s share increases to such a level which is not affordable by the patient (Mukherjee, 2008).
Choice: A patient in Australian set up cannot choose their own particular specialist physician. Furthermore, they also might not have a decision about when they are admitted to a health care facility for elective medical procedures. Medicare benefits also depend on a timetable of expenses known as the Medicare Benefits Schedule, or MBS. This is particularly set by the Australian Government after a conversation with the therapeutic experts. Experts are not required to cling to the timetable of treatment (with the exception of optometry) and can charge more than the booked expense (Lancet,2014).
Quality: The overall quality of Australian health care system is satisfactory with few scopes of improvement in by strengthening doctor patient ratio (Mukherjee, 2008).


Cost: The total health care funding by UK government since 1997 to 2013 has been increased significantly. The total healthcare expenses in private and public health care system in the year 2013 was ?150.6 Billion compared to ?54. 9 Billion in the year 1997. The total growth recorded for the health care expenditure from 1997 to 2009 was 8.1 per cent whereas the growth has been reduced to 2per cent from 2009 to 2013. The primary funding for health care has been taking place in national insurance contributions apart from general taxation and user charges. The primary advantage of the private sector in health care is the choice of consultants which NHS has adopted recently as patient's basic rights. The main disadvantage of health care is the cost of the treatment which is quite low in NHS in the UK (Anhang Price et al. 2014).
Access: national health care system in the UK has been the most accessible health care system in terms of cost. The funding has been increased significantly in the NHS which provides more choices for the low cost and high quality treatment. Whereas the in the accessibility in the private sector dependent on the affordability and wealth. The choice of specialist was always available in private sector which NHS has been implementing as the basic right of the patients. The cost involved in both the cases poses a huge difference where high cost treatment offered by public sector compared to NHS scheme (Mukherjee, 2008).
Choice: the people covered under NHS have been provided with some effective rights for choices such as general surgery and NHS care. Even the patients under NHS can choose the organization covered under NHS according to their convenience but the choice in private section depends upon the cost affordability and wealth.
Quality: the quality concerns of NHS have been resolved by the periodic increase in budget allocation from 1997 to 2013. The primary concern of the NHS constitution is to provide maximized value with less cost (Fleming, 2008).


Cost: the national expenditure of United States on Health care has been increased to $3.2 trillion which is a significant increase by 5.8 per cent. The affordable care act has a significant impact on the health care system in the USA which increases the public health care funding. Therefore total growth including private and public sector has significantly increased in late 2015. The government coverage for health care services in the United States is 27.8 per cent whereas the primary funding took place from 84per cent insurance coverage for health care system in the United States. The advantage of private health care system in the USA is fast treatment and free choice of doctors whereas in the case of government funded organizations the queue is long and the choice is less (Runciman, 2012).
Access: the accessibility in the private health care system is high compared to government funded hospitals in the USA. 84per cent of the insurance coverage of the United state population could access the facility whereas the rest of the population has a less accessibility in the private sector hospitals in the USA (Lancet,2014).
Choice: the choice is high in case of private hospitals and various range of treatments could be availed by the insurance holders in the USA. Patients in private sector hospital could choose any treatment method according to the insurance coverage (Howick et al. 2014).
Quality: the quality of the total health care system in the United States is quite high and 84per cent of the insurance covered people could avail the high quality treatment depending upon the affordability and insurance coverage of the nature of the treatment (Alhassan et al. 2015).


Figure 1: Australian Health system

(Source:Corallo et al. 2014

Figure 2: Life Expectancy among the inhabitant

(Source: Corallo et al. 2014)

Figure 3: Distribution of doctor per 1000 person

Source: Corallo et al. 2014

Figure 4: Distribution of hospital bed per 1000 person

(Source:Corallo et al. 2014)

Health care Issues




Basic concept

The health care system in Australia is the mixed type where the governmental control is accompanied with the privatization. Each and every Australian Citizen is entitled to the access of the Universal Medical Cover which is also called Medicare.

Being an industrialized country, the access to health care system is not ensured by the contextual government. However, the government has provided employee retirement income security act which guarantees full employer preference over health insurance. Hence, it is seen that the health care system in the United States majorly owns by the private sector.

The Government of the contextual country establishes a statutory body named National Health Service or NHS to ensure the health of their citizen.

Cost (total health care expenditure per capita)

4,115 dollar

9,086 dollar

3,364 dollar

Accessibility (per 1000 population)

Doctor: 3.4

Hospital bed: 3.4


Acute care: 3.4


Hospital bed: 2.5

Nurse: 7.9

Acute care: 2.5

Doctor: 2.8

Hospital bed:2.8

Nurse: 8.2

Acute care:2.7


As the Australian health care system is a mixed system where privatization and governmental control coexist, the choice of health care is moderate.

In the case of the United States, the choice is relatively high as people have sole responsibility for the hospital bill payment.

As the healthcare system is fully controlled by statutory organization National Health Service or NHS, the choice is less.


Moderate quality moderate affordability

High quality low affordability

Comparatively Low quality but high affordability.

Ranking as per World Health Organization (WHO)




Table 1: Comparisons summarized in charts, tables, pro/con lists etc.

(Source:Corallo et al. 2014)


All of these three countries have a lack of doctors as per 1000 patients. It is also accompanied by the problem of lack of hospital beds per 1000 patients. Hence, the welfare of the patients should be the first priority to the authority instead of anything else. On this note, each of the above discussed countries needs to pay more attention to improve their doctor patients’ ration along with the number of bed allocations.

Advantages of Australia's system compared to Britain: More choices are available as it is a mixed system.

Advantages of Australia's system compared to the USA: It has greater affordability as it is partially controlled by the governmental body.

Ways of improvement of Australia's system of implementing elements of the British or US system: Australia’s health care system will be better if they concentrate on the patient’s problem, more than their money making thought. Co-payment is something that the poor cannot enjoy even when they want that facility.

Ways of improvement of the British, US systems: the British healthcare system needs to pay more attention to the quality, whereas the US system needs to provide health care at more affordable rates.


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