Global Health and Macroeconomics Are Interrelated

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Health Status vs. Economy

Health has a special place in the economy of a country. The wealth of a nation is measured by the health status of its citizens. Thus, health performance and economic performance go hand in hand. Health issues directly affect education, labor productivity, savings and investments, and demography in a nation (Khullar & Chokshi, 2018). Thus, this essay further explains the reasons why the health status of a country plays an important role in its economic status.

Improved health boost the Gross National Income (GNP) of a country. Singh and Das (2015) argue that improved health increases benefits to a country including enhanced economic development, increased productivity amongst workers, and increased individual savings. With increased savings and productivity, the accumulation of capital helps stimulate growth through investment. In addition, companies tend to invest more when workforces are healthier and educated.

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Secondly, health affects the production level of a country through different channels. For example, health improvement in the human force attracts a high level of motivation to continue education and obtain additional skills (Mounier-Jack et al, 2017). Enhanced skills and education amongst workers means increased productivity level. Also, an enhanced health index in society encourages individuals to save more. What follows is reduced mortality and an increase in life expectancy. As a result, physical capital grows thus impacting the labor force productivity and economic growth (Mounier-Jack et al, 2017).

In a study conducted by Dixon et al (2001), there exists a positive correlation between life expectancy and economic growth. The findings are a sure confirmation that health has a significant impact on productivity and economic growth. Thus, investment in health is desirable, and an essential priority for any society that wants to experience economic growth (Dixon et al, 2001). The need for investment is also tied to the fact that health expenditures have a positive and significant impact on gross domestic product growth (Dixon et al, 2001). If the health expenditures are high, human capital renders economic growth insignificant.

Economic Status and Healthcare

The level of income affects health access and quality in many ways. Low-income and middle-income groups face a bigger challenge with regard to accessing quality healthcare (Marmot, 2002). Most of the time, they don’t access affordable care (Khullar & Chokshi, 2018). Compared to higher-income groups, low-income groups face barriers like lack of health insurance, inability to access new drugs and technologies, and lack of access to primary and specialty care (Khullar & Chokshi, 2018). Low-income groups get employed in institutions that do not offer health benefits (Marmot, 2002). Also, low-income groups exhibit higher rates of behavioral risk factors like smoking, obesity, substance use, and low levels of physical activity (Khullar & Chokshi, 2018).

Status Access, quality, and cost of Healthcare

Impact on the Economy Low-income

  • No insurance
  • No access to new drugs
  • Lack of access to new technologies
  • Lack of access to primary and specialty care
  • higher rates of behavioral risks factors like smoking, obesity, substance use, and low levels of physical activity

Poor economy Middle-income

  • No insurance
  • No access to new drugs
  • Lack of access to new technologies
  • Lack of access to primary and specialty care
  • Higher rates of behavioral risks factors like smoking, obesity, substance use, and low levels of physical activity

Unstable Economy High-income

  • Access to insurance
  • Access to new drugs
  • Access to new technologies
  • Access to primary and specialty care
  • Low rates of behavioral risks

Stable Economy Conclusion

In conclusion, health status and economic growth are related. Health status directly affects education, labor productivity, savings, investments, and demography of a nation. Considering different economic status and access to quality healthcare as well as a cost factor, it is evident that higher educational attainment leads to awareness and improved health conditions while high-income status leads to easy access to quality and affordable healthcare.

References

  1. Dixon, S., McDonald, S., & Roberts, J. (2001). HIV/AIDS and development in Africa. Journal of International Development, 13(4), 381-389. doi: 10.1002/jid.801
  2. Khullar, D., & Chokshi, D. (2018). Health, Income, & Poverty: Where We Are & What Could Help. Health Affairs Health Policy Brief, October 4, 2018.
  3. Marmot, M. (2002). The Influence of Income On Health: Views of an Epidemiologist. Health Affairs, 21(2), 31-46. doi: 10.1377/hlthaff.21.2.31
  4. Mounier-Jack, S., Mayhew, S., & Mays, N. (2017). Integrated care: learning between high-income, and low- and middle-income country health systems. Health Policy and Planning, 32(suppl_4), iv6-iv12. doi: 10.1093/heapol/czx039
  5. Singh, P., & Das, M. (2015). Impact of Health Status on Economic Growth: A Study of Different Income Group Countries. International Journal of Humanities & Social Science Studies (IJHSSS), 2(3), 233-240
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