Global Health Essay
COVID-19 pandemic has had devastating impacts globally, and this includes impacts on the healthcare system. COVID-19 led to the healthcare systems grappling with resource deployment, mobilization and reorganizing the healthcare system to effectively address the pandemic and keep providing high-quality care to patients (McMahon et al., 2020). This paper compared how the healthcare systems in Canada and the US addressed and responded to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In both the USA, the first cases of COVID-19 appeared in late January but lockdowns started at the end of March 2020. In both countries, there were no national mandates. Both countries started reopening in late May (Unruh et al., 2021). However, the US had a rebound spike that was due to a lack of national mandates on how to handle the pandemic and also some states not adhering to the CDC guidelines on safe reopening. Likewise, in Canada, recommendations for reopening such as adequate sufficient testing, tracing, and effective isolation was not followed (Unruh et al., 2021). Therefore, both Canada and US indicated some nonadherence to containment measures like wearing masks and physical distancing. This may have contributed to the spread of the virus. For example, the US particularly experienced a shortage of PPE and healthcare providers during the pandemic (Unruh et al., 2019). Both the US and Canada delayed or canceled the non-essential care to create surge care whereas the public delayed seeking care for the fear of contracting COVID-19. This resulted in a notable drop in healthcare use during the pandemic in both countries.
In Canada, payments for COVID-19 testing and treatment were covered while in the US, the treatment for COVID-19 for the uninsured was not guaranteed, even though the testing was free (Unruh et al., 2019). The lack of universal coverage for healthcare in the US led to many people experiencing financial obstacles for the non-COVID-19 conditions.
To reduce the spread of COVID-19, both the US and Canada introduced innovative solutions to ensure that healthcare services continued being delivered to patients while curbing the spread of the disease (Unruh et al., 2021). For example, in the US, telehealth was widely embraced in many hospitals where care was delivered remotely, especially to patients with chronic diseases. For example, patients with diabetes and hypertension would access care remotely either through the phone or patient portals where they would interact with healthcare providers, be assessed, monitored, and even prescribed treatments remotely. Similarly, in Canada, family physicians shifted to virtual care where patient visits, consultations, and psychotherapy care were provided virtually.
Nurse leaders have the role of creating environments that ensure excellence in care provision during the pandemic (Aquilia et al., 2020). Therefore, during COVID-19, nurse leaders have the role of guiding emergency management, implementing infection control and prevention guidelines, and directly engaging with patients, while supervising the nursing workforce through continuous on-site presence. Additionally, nurse leader has the role of translating their valuable experiential learning to lead in their organizations by implementing innovative interventions to ensure a reduced spread of the corona virus (Aquilia et al., 2020). For example, a nurse leader can lead the implementation of a quality improvement program aimed to reduce the spread of the corona virus in the organization. The nurse leader can also organize awareness and education exercises for the public to educate them on how to prevent the spread of the disease, including educating the public on the importance of being vaccinated against COVID-19.
Both the US and Canada did not initially implement national mandates to curb the spread of the virus. However, while in Canada universal care allowed everyone to access both testing and treatment, in the US, the treatment was not guaranteed. Both countries have embraced telehealth to facilitate the delivery of healthcare remotely and reduce the spread of the Corona virus. A nurse leader has a critical role to play during the COVID-19 pandemic including leading quality improvement programs aimed to prevent the spread of the pandemic.
Aquilia, A., Grimley, K., Jacobs, B., Kosturko, M., Mansfield, J., Mathers, C., … & Niederhauser, V. (2020). Nursing leadership during COVID-19: Enhancing patient, family, and workforce experience. Patient Experience Journal, 7(2), 136-143.
McMahon, M., Nadigel, J., Thompson, E., & Glazier, R. H. (2020). Informing Canada’s Health System Response to COVID-19: Priorities for Health Services and Policy Research. Healthcare policy = Politiques de sante, 16(1), 112–124. https://doi.org/10.12927/hcpol.2020.26249
Unruh, L., Allin, S., Marchildon, G., Burke, S., Barry, S., Siersbaek, R., … & Williams, G. A. (2021). A comparison of 2020 health policy responses to the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada, Ireland, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America. Health Policy.
Synthesize the information you gathered for each country (U.S. A and Canada) in the Compare and Contrast Template into a 2- to 3-page response. Your response should address the following:
Summarize how the health problem you selected is currently addressed by the healthcare system in each of the countries. Be specific and provide examples.
Explain at least one approach each country’s healthcare system uses to address the selected health problem.
Explain the role of the nurse leader in improving global health.
the health problem selected is covid-19
the countries are U.S and Canada
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