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Health Labor Force

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  • Pages: 6
  • Word count: 1340
  • Category: Health

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Question 1

Anderson and Stenzil claimed that development in ICT would lead to “a real increase in physical productivity of 50% over the next 10-15%”. There are many influences which may influence this prediction.

 The first important factor that we have to look at is the flow of funds for development of the ICT and the development of ICT infrastructure in the country.  In my opinion, there are different factors which together will determine the layout of ICT infrastructure and policies. The government comes central to the implementation of ICT infrastructure and policies.  However the government does not work alone since there are many stakeholders involved in the implementation of ICT in the Australian healthcare sector. (Garg and Neill, 2005)

The first stakeholders who have to throw in their support if this is to be implemented should be the politicians. Politicians constitute the legislative body of the country and therefore their influence can determine whether ICT plays a central role in increasing physical productivity. We need the influence of politicians to factor in budget allocation to upgrade the ICT facilities that we have in the country since this needs money.

The input from the physical and the patients will also count to the way ICT will increase productivity of physician. Acording to Selenke (2007) there are still some conservative physical and patients who will need to be reeducated on the role ICT can play in delivering efficient services in the medical field. Patients need to be educated to overcome some negative social perception of the new ICT tools, especially for the old generations.  If these factors are considered, ICT will play crucial role in diagnosing, treatment and care of patients.  However there must be efforts to influence all the stakeholders for this to be achieved.

Question 2

There are many profession issues which are likely to positively or negatively influence the uptake of Duckett’s proposed model for education.

On the negative point of view, we can take some examples that have been given by Duckett (2005) on the education model.  For example Speech Pathology as studies in the US comes as postgraduate 2 year masters degree.  If consider the Australian example we find that Australian Speech pathology practitioners complete their studies in just four years and are well prepared  to face their practices in the field.  On the other hand the US speech pathologist master level need to undergo a two year supervised clinical practice in order to be registered. Which situation can we see here?  In case masters degree qualification in Australia, we would be increasing the education time. At the same time in the current status, Australian graduates feel well qualified to handle their duties well. In case there was no supervision for the master’s degree, this would mean compromising the level of care provided.

On a positive note the concept of multi-skilled worker is one of the most important factors that can help health care professional to offer various services to the clients. The concept of having health professionals acquire a basic EN training is also important since it gives health care workers the basic skills needed in their work.  This means that if all the registered and the multi skilled workers acquired the basic EN skills they would be able to offer their services to the community in times of need especially in times of disaster.

Question 2

From a student perspective, the following are the main issues to changing the educational preparation for Duckett’s proposed model for education:

The proposed Duckett’s model is quite fine when it comes to some aspect of medical practices but on others it may fail to give the expected results.  Let us take for the example the issue of training multi task professionals. If we make reference to nursing professionals we can argue that there are many nursing professionals who usually find their area so specialty very satisfying in deed.  These specialists are likely to spend most of their time in their areas of practices where they perfect their skills. As a student, this is what I would like to see.  I want to concentrate my development in one area where I can exhaust and become very competitive. But when the idea of multitask training comes in, I can be a little hesitance because it means increasing the scope of learning  which is likely to translate to increased time of training. If multi task training is to be implemented in the normal period of study, then it means we would be compromising the quality of training and in that case the quality of services to be offered.  the proposed education model is likely to decrease the time of training which in my view would help the health sector to satisfying the increasing demand for trained professionals but how would be the quality of their training?

Question 4

Menadue’s description of the health workforce

According to Menadue (2003) the structure of the workforce was more appropriate to work need of the 19th century as compared to the needs of the 21st century.  I agree with this statement in view of the current health system and practices that we have inherited since the 19th century and which have completely failed us. In my view, we have failed to integrate new work models that fit the changing service delivery environment in the 21st century especially under the influence of changing technology.  According to Pratt (1991) our health care system is still awash with institutionalism and more hospital focused health care delivery system.  This means that we have not taken heath as a system by its own. What do we mean here? We have failed to address the most important factors in addressing the health of our people which in this case would be primary health care and preventative health practices right from our home. We are still using the outdated health approach of the 19th century where our focus is on hospitals. Our structure of workforce has been concentrated in hospitals instead of moving to people’s home where they can offer health education. We need to have new health delivery structure which emphasize on value and utilization of the workforce in dispersed manner rather than institutionalized manner.

Question 5

There are a number of issues that arise from the paper that I find needs to be looked into in details.  One of the most pressing issues I find in this paper is on the impact of the proposed model on training of health professional and amid the rising challenges in provision of health care. In reality we are faced by rising need for health care services from the growing population. This remains a challenge to our health care system in view of the current infrastructure in place. On the other hand, our health care system is faced with shortage of health care professionals and the proposed education model has generated doubts on its ability to produce the right quality.  Furthermore we have seen that our health infrastructure is failing us in terms of provision of primary and preventative health care. Therefore I feel that we need more working structure and changes in education model that addresses health care demands in the 21st century taking into consideration the role of ICT in provision of health care services. otherwise, our quality of services will continues to be undermined by some of the factors we have highlighted above like shortage of health care professionals or having unqualified health care workers compromising the quality of services.


Duckett, S. (2005): Health workforce design for the 21st century. Australian Health Review, May 2005

Garg, A., & Neill, K. (2005): IT matters. Journal of American Medical Association (JAMA), Vol. 293(10): pg1223.

Menadune, J. (2003): Health workforce reform. Health Review, 2003

Pratt, G. (1991): Towards nursing discipline. Melbourne: Churchill Livingstone

Selenke, J. (2007): EHR bliss. Health Management Technology, Vol. 28

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