Health Policy Development in Germany

Summary

Germany has the largest population in Europe, with a competitive economy. High levels of invention and exporting are responsible for Germany’s global economic competitiveness and networking; high-growth industries such as automobiles, chemicals, and medical technology rely on exports for more than half of sales. The United States of America, the European Union and China are Germany’s main trading partners. The current international trade quota is 84.4 percent of GDP, which is derived by dividing the sum of imports and exports by the total gross domestic product (Dong et al., 2018). According to the International Energy Agency, the United States has a 26.7 percent share of the world’s oil supply (Kungl & Geels, 2018). Digitalization mega-trends pose a substantial challenge to most German firms. Gleichzeitig helped Germany’s start-up scene grow and prosper. Germany’s development strategy prioritizes human rights, hunger and poverty reduction, environmental protection, universal health and education, gender equality, fair supply chains, digitalization, technology transfer, and private investment in sustainable development. The promotion of sustainable development in Africa, Asia, and Latin America is among the other top priorities of the administration.

The high degree of innovation in the German economy and the country’s strong emphasis on exporting are responsible for the country’s competitiveness and worldwide networking. More than half of overall sales revenue is generated by exports in businesses with significant levels of export activity, such as automobile manufacturing, mechanical and plant engineering, chemicals, and medical technology. Germany has the most open economy among the G7 countries to measure how crucial overseas trade is to a country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) (Wahab et al., 2018). The international trade quota now available is 84.4 percent of GDP, which is derived by dividing the sum of imported and exported goods by the total gross domestic product (Dong et al., 2018).

There are many forms of individual freedom paired with central economic planning and government regulation in Germany’s financial system, which results in a mixed economic system. Germany is a member of both the EU and the UN. Germany created a national currency and overhauled its banking system to promote economic growth. Regardless of the expense, the new dominion’s financial soundness had to be maintained. Both democratically elected, Berlin’s Bundestag and Bundesrat have national legislative power.

Social Determinants of Health in Germany

Especially for the most vulnerable sections of society, socioeconomic determinants of health significantly impact health outcomes. When delivering treatment to these populations, it is essential to consider education, income level, and environment to improve health outcomes. Additionally, health disparities and injustices are exacerbated in Germany as a result of the social determinants of health. Food insecurity makes it difficult for people to eat healthily. Compared to individuals who have access to nutritious foods, this increases their risk of heart disease, diabetes, and obesity, as well as their life expectancy. Communities must be improved by public health and its partners in education, transportation, and housing.

Social inequalities in money, employment status, and educational attainment are all highly associated with health inequalities, as is the reverse. Poverty, unemployment, and education are all critical social determinants of health in Germany and are all associated with immigration origin. Men and women with lower incomes, who are more likely to be overweight or obese, are more prone than the general population to have health-related pain and obstacles in their daily lives. Among other factors, their subjective health is worse than the average population’s; for example, they smoke more frequently, exercise less regularly, and visit the doctor less frequently than the general public.

Men have a different mortality risk depending on their amount of earnings than women. Men’s mortality risk in the lower-income category increases by 2.5 times compared to men, with earnings more significant than 150 percent of the national average income (Jijiie et al., 2021). This is after considering factors such as age and other risk factors. Those with nine years of schooling have 1.2 times the risk of chronic or recurring illness than those with 12 or more years of study.

Socioeconomic factors significantly impact health outcomes, especially for the poor. When delivering treatment to these populations, it is necessary to consider education, income level, and environment to improve health outcomes. The SDO’s contribution to health inequality is widespread. For example, access to healthy food stores reduces the likelihood of obesity and poor diet. Less access to nutritional foods puts them at risk of developing health conditions like earth disease, diabetes, and obesity. Rather than government rules, environmental improvements must be made by public health groups and their partners.

Germany’s development policy has improved in recent years, becoming more coherent, effective, and efficient in its efforts. With each passing year, German development cooperation grows more narrowly focused on specific issues and fewer countries. Under the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), Germany is required to provide social protection to everyone who lives in the country. A specific sustainable development goal is universal health coverage, ensuring that health benefits are available to all people, including asylum seekers, non-working European Union citizens, and those who do not have a legal right to be present. Globally, greater attention must be made to building social protection systems, particularly in developing countries of the developing world’s southern hemisphere. Therefore, global health strategies should involve universal health care and social protection in both countries.

Public Issues

A health literacy issue exists when policymakers develop and distribute health information that is difficult to grasp. The unexpected, imprecise, or inconsistent steps that individuals are asked to figure out health services are a problem. Mistakes in medicine and treatment lead to more hospitalizations, extended stays, doctor visits, and higher medical costs. Personal health literacy includes reading prescription drug labels, doctor’s orders, and permission forms.

Patients with low health literacy may experience a variety of harmful health outcomes due to potential communication barriers between them and their healthcare providers. In certain studies, people who experience such communication difficulties are more likely to be admitted to a medical facility. It is essential to have good health literacy to ensure the safety and quality of health care services. It impacts decisions such as how often to take medication, when to seek medical attention, and which services to seek.

A considerable influence on health is exerted by cultural influences. Patients’ perspectives of health, illness and mortality are influenced by their ideas about the origins of disease, methods of health promotion, how illness and pain are experienced and expressed, where they seek care, and what sorts of therapy they choose. It is essential to have good health literacy to ensure the safety and quality of health care services. Health literacy can impact how often they take medication when they seek health care services and which services they desire. Literate people can enjoy healthier lives, manage the healthcare system, and advocate for themselves.

Health Inequality and Life Expectancy

Health inequalities are unjust and avoidable disparities in health status among people or communities. An organism’s life expectancy is projected based on its birth year, age, and other demographic factors, such as gender. The expectancy from birth to death is the most often used measure. Healthy Life Expectancy (HLE) disparities are significantly more widespread than disparities in overall life expectancy. Those who live in more disadvantaged areas tend to have a shorter life expectancy and spend a greater part of their lives in poor health than those who do not. Good access to healthcare enhanced life expectancy by around 2–2.5 years for men and women living in urban and rural regions. Living longer by 1.0–1.2 years at 85 was the result (Hao et al., 2020). A reduction in lower socioeconomic categories’ life expectancy can exceed an increase in life expectancy when inequality is high.

It lowers life expectancy compared to a country with similar social characteristics but less inequality. People in a country do not all have the same mortality risk or life expectancy. Higher social rank has historically been associated with more excellent health, reduced mortality, and longer life expectancy. Social inequality is distinct from the other elements called a “fundamental” source of disparities in exposure to and experience of risk for bad health. The primary cause theory emphasizes that socioeconomic position creates social inequality in health in numerous ways.

Efforts to Reduce Health Inequalities

Eliminating health inequalities can be done through intervening across a broad spectrum of public policy sectors, including policies to address economic and social disparities and activities that emphasize disadvantaged populations and underprivileged places, considering health fairness in policy and program development. Public health can help to reduce well-being inequities by engaging with other sectors, collaborating with communities to reduce disparities, and identifying opportunities for fitness equity reduction in the community.

The necessity of enhancing the health of all individuals, especially those with social and economic disadvantages, was recognized even before the healthcare reform movement. Promoting health equity through addressing socioeconomic determinants of health will be critical in the future years. Public health is critical in addressing the socioeconomic determinants of health and promoting health equity. Global health systems have an ethical, social, and economic imperative to decrease health inequities within and between countries.

Developing Health Policy

It is widely acknowledged that Germany has one of the world’s most advanced healthcare delivery systems. Numerous options are available to residents seeking insurance and a diverse selection of health insurance packages to match their financial and medical requirements. Most of the healthcare system in Germany is financed by premiums paid by employers and workers. Every employee makes a 7.5 percent contribution to a public health insurance pool, which is the government’s general fund (Carman et al., 2020). In Germany, health insurance is mandatory; nearly eighty-six percent of the population has access to coverage for inpatient and outpatient care, mental health services, and prescription drugs. The program is administered through sickness funds, which are non-profit insurers. Government has almost no role in direct health care delivery. Sickness funds are funded by both employers’ and employees’ contributions. Inpatient services and medications have copayments, while sickness funds have deductibles. Germans earning above $68,000 can select private health insurance instead of SHI. The state does not provide financial assistance for private insurance.

The German government is committed to improving the relationship between international trade and development cooperation as part of its overall development policy framework. German development policy has refocused on joint efforts to protect global public goods like the climate and environment, economic stability, and the control of transboundary infectious diseases. The German government has tightened its thematic focus on several regions, including Africa.

The German government has collaborated with 30 countries to promote good governance. Its ten objectives for more education span all sectors of education, according to the BMZ. Germany’s health plan aims to strengthen partner countries’ systems. Priorities include baby and maternal health and HIV/AIDS prevention. The German government works with partner countries to create the climate for private-sector engagement and government-business partnership. The German government has developed two new development strategies to ensure water, food, and energy security: Rural Development and its Contribution to Food Security and Promoting Sustainable Agriculture. Germany also assists developing and rising countries in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and adapting their development processes. Some of the issues influencing Germany’s economy include the dominance of the automotive and mechanical sectors, particularly in exports, despite the influx of immigrants.

References

Carman, K. G., Liu, J., & White, C. (2020). Accounting for the burden and redistribution of health care costs: Who uses care and who pays for it. Health Services Research, 55(2), 224-231.

Dong, D., Gao, X., Sun, X., & Liu, X. (2018). Factors affecting copper international trade community formation: Based on resource dependence and network theory. Resources Policy, 57, 167-185.

Hao, L., Xu, X., Dupre, M. E., Guo, A., Zhang, X., Qiu, L.,… & Gu, D. (2020). Adequate access to healthcare and added life expectancy among older adults in China. BMC Geriatrics, 20(1), 1-15.

Jijiie, A., Alonso-García, J., & Arnold, S. (2021). Mortality by socio-economic class and its impact on the retirement schemes: How to render the systems fairer?. European Actuarial Journal, 1-43. Web.

Kungl, G., & Geels, F. W. (2018). Sequence and alignment of external pressures in industry destabilization: Understanding the downfall of incumbent utilities in the German energy transition (1998–2015). Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions, 26, 78-100.

Wahab, S., Zhang, X., Safi, A., Wahab, Z., & Amin, M. (2021). Does energy productivity and technological innovation limit trade-adjusted carbon emissions?. Economic Research-Ekonomska Istraživanja, 34(1), 1896-1912.

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DemoEssays. 2023. "Health Policy Development in Germany." April 17, 2023. https://demoessays.com/health-policy-development-in-germany/.

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DemoEssays. "Health Policy Development in Germany." April 17, 2023. https://demoessays.com/health-policy-development-in-germany/.