The medical services industry experiences some regulations at domestic and international level; the major role for the regulations is to facilitate the provision of quality medical services. The United States of America Food & Drug Administration (FDA or USFDA), is mandated with the role of protecting and promoting public health. It fulfills its task through delegated powers from United States Department of Health and Human Services to regulate and supervise the provision of food and medical service/products (Food & Drug Administration Official Website, 2011). This paper discusses how the agency affects consumer Choices.
The government agency you selected and its role.
The regulation body is formed through section 361 of the Public Health Service Act, and has its headquarters at Silver Spring, Maryland. The human capacity of the body includes 223 field offices served by 13 laboratories. The head of the agency is elected by the United States President with the guidance and approval of the senate, he holds the title of Commissioner of Food and Drugs, since February 2009, the agency commissioner is Dr. Margaret A. Hamburg. The agency has diversified its processes to other countries like the United Kingdom, Chile, Belgium, China, India, and Costa Rica; this is in the efforts of improving the service provision in the entire world (Food & Drug Administration Official Website, 2011).
The overall set of health care products or services that the agency is responsible for overseeing and/or regulating
The body has been enacted to regulate and look into food and medication that human beings use in the market. The focus of the authority is on the quality and the effects if any of the products that are supplied in the market.
Other than human food, the authority extends its services to cover the quality of medical facility, veterinary services, cosmetics and tobacco products. It regulates both locally made and imported/exported commodities (Harmon, 2002).
The specific health care product or service category on which your presentation focuses
The body framework of operation can be divided into five main areas with different tasks they are:
- Food safety and tobacco products: the regulating body has the mandate of ensuring that quality and disease free foods and tobacco products are sold in the economy
- Dietary supplements and over-the-counter pharmaceutical : the authority endures that the supply of medicine and dietary supplements is form reputable institutions that can offer high quality products at an appropriate cost.
- Drugs, vaccines, and biopharmaceuticals: the authority ensures that the country has the right vaccines and the drugs in the market are responsive to the needs of the customers.
- Medical equipments: the authority ensures that the equipments used for various functions in the economy are hygienically and of the right quality
Veterinary products, and cosmetics: the body extends its services on veterinary and cosmetics, it ensures that the products in the market does not harm people or animals (Hickmann , 2003).
At least three advantages to the health care consumer of regulatory oversight for your selected product category
When the agency is overseeing the provision of customer goods and services, the customer benefits in three main folds, costs, quality, efficiency and transparency.
The authority has the power of setting ceiling prices for some commodities when called to do so, this protects customers from extortion by businesspersons for their benefits.
Other than regulating quality, the agency ensures that the country has quality products and services that fall in its area of jurisdiction with good quality customer welfare is improved.
Efficiency and transparency
The agency ensures that companies are transparency in the products they manufacture, it endures that only licensed individual and companies operate in the economy. This creates efficiency and transparency in the sectors it has been involved.
At least three advantages to the health care provider of regulatory oversight for the selected category.
The health care providers are also likely to benefit from the agency roles: the following are the areas they are likely to benefit,
- Facilitating fair competition: service providers are likely to benefit from fair competition as prices flows are set in the market
- One role that the agency plays is a dispute resolution, thus operators in the industry will benefit from the regulation
- With licensing roles, the health providers are assisted when making their decision on the companies to buy their commodities.
At least one-way in which the agency’s regulation of the category affects consumer choice in the health care marketplace
The body regulated advertising and promotion campaigns in the market, they emphasizes that when advertising for commodities, then a company need to offer both sides of their drugs, they should offer the positive and the negative impacts of the same drug.
Consumers judge and make their decisions on the persuasion and the marketing campaigns embarked by the company: when regulated then consumers choice is influenced.
For example, when advertising for tobacco products, the agency requires that a warning be given at the end of the advert that tobacco products are harmful to human health, such approaches influences consumer choice. The regulation determined the information that gets to the consumer, this means that the agency has an influence on the adverts and marketing campaigns that medical organizations have; the regulation is meant to regulate the impression that medical facilities give to consumers (Williamson, 2007).
Ways in which your selected agency affects health care costs for consumers
The agency is mandated with the role of regulating health care services costs, it can set ceilings on certain commodities, which are considered to be at the risk of being exploited by businesspersons.
From an indirect perspective, the agency ensure that the economy consumes foods that are not harmful to their health thus they fall ill less often. Companies that offer the medial facilities, products and goods are expected to follow a certain regulation and framework of operation, when they adhere to such policies, their cost of operation is likely to be reduced, the net effect is a reduction in medical services costs.
On the other hand, there are times that some companies have set their prices so low that they lead to unfair business, the agency has the powers of setting the minimal costs of provision of certain products and services (Philip, 2003).
Ways in which your selected agency influences the consumer’s choice of providers. If you find that the agency does not affect consumer choice of providers, explain why
The agency acts as a regulator in the industry, it also controls the advertising campaigns adopted by different companies; the regulation affects the kind of information that reaches the customer. Customers learn of the existence of certain provider from the adverts made so when the agency regulates the advertisements it has a direct effect on the choice of customers.
Periodically, the agency publishes names of individuals and companies licensed to provide products and services; the publication affects the choice that the customer will make, as customers will be willing to seek services, form licensed providers (Kotler, 2008).
The quality, timeliness, affordability and efficiency of medical facilities is crucial for human welfare, the United States has mandated Food & Drug Administration (FDA or USFDA) with the task of regulating the country’s medical service provision. The agency has the role of regulating medical costs, maintaining quality and licensing practitioners; the agency derives its powers from section 361 of the Public Health Service Act.
Food & Drug Administration Official Website. (2011). Food & Drug Administration. Web.
Harmon, E. (2002). The Food and Drug Administration. New York: Infobase Publishing.
Hickmann , A. (2003). The Food and Drug Administration (FDA). New York: Nova Publishers.
Kotler,P. (2008). Stategic Marketing for Health Care Organizations: Building a Customer-Driven Health System. New York: John Wiley & Sons Inc.
Philip, J. (2003). Protecting America’s Health: The FDA, Business, and One Hundred Years of Regulation. New York: Knopf.
Williamson, B. (2007). Food and Drug Administration: Revenue Information on Certain Companies Participating in the Medical Device User Fee Program. New York: DIANE Publishing.