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Free Essay Sample: Third World Healthcare

Philippines is an island country, situated in the Southeast Asia. With the territory of 300, 000 square kilometers, it is on the 12th place among the most populated countries in the world. The Philippines is widely recognized as home to the most hospitable people, which makes it more popular and attractive to both local and foreign tourists. Nevertheless, it is considered to be the country of the third world due to the fact that education, infrastructure, and law-abidance are on the poor level.

Information about the Country

According to the World Bank Organization, the total population of Philippines is 10,572 million of people. The infant rate (children under 15 years) is almost 18 million male and 17,300 million female. People aged between 15-64 years old are the biggest part of the total population, which reaches more 63 million people. Only 4 million are people older than 64 years old. It makes the Philippines the 63rd country in the list of countries with the highest population growth rate. The birth rate is 25, 34 in the population of 1,000 people (2011). The death rate is 5, 02 deaths in 1,000 population (2011). The population density of Philippines is the highest in the Asia.

The country is diverse in terms of ethnicity. A lot of different ethnical groups played an important role in the history of Philippines in 16th century. Tagalog is the major ethnic group. The Filipino language is based on its ethnics. The major part of population is the descents of Austronesians. Almost 130 different languages are spoken in the country due to the wide range of dialects, but the main languages are Filipino and English. It should be noted that people believe their country is not appropriate for life, and almost 12 million people migrated overseas, especially to the United States.


Talking about the state of the health care in Philippines, it has enhanced essentially over the last four decades: infant mortality has decreased by two thirds, the dissemination of communicable illnesses has decreased, and life expectancy has increased up to 70 years. However, the injustice in health care availability and outcomes between people with different incomes remain.

The main point of injustice is the availability, expensiveness and utilization of health care. Since 1995, PhilHealth has been a major national health insurance agency and gradually increased its population exposure. However it resulted in the high rate of out of pocket payments, as the corruption prospered.

In 2010, big reorganization targeted at achieving the broad-based coverage was started, which focused on increasing the number of poor families registered in PhilHealth, producing more extensive advantages package and decreasing copayments. Searching for the new and restraining old staff in deficiently served areas was the major challenge.

Philippines is one of the greatest exporters of medical employees, yet some villages and unfortunate areas still face crucial deficit in those. Low quality of work and lack of attention to patients during the diagnostics are the main problems. Consistent reforms in financing, delivering of the services and controlling on different levels can help to eliminate inequalities and injustice. However, the implementation of the reforms was threatened by corruption, decentralized system and use to old private sector, which decreased the quality of services.

United Nations Development Program (UNDP)’s annual Human Development Report about the quality of life in different countries in 2009 placed Philippines on the 105th place.

Few years before 2009, Philippines was on the 90th place among 177 countries on the list. The UNDP report made an estimation of the development of countries in the spheres of health care, education, national progress, salary rate, and other indicators, which respond to the quality of life. The major part of the population in the Philippines lives in the “poor” regions. Because of the lack of jobs, poor education, migration and corruption, the quality of life is hard to improve. The quality of life influences the health care system. A lot of people simply cannot afford proper living conditions and health care. They do not have money on the medicines and private doctors. In such a way, the workability of the population drops.

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Health care in Philippines differs drastically if we compare big cities and villages, where it is almost unavailable. The main part of health care business is in private sector. However, the material base of the medical facilities is not sufficient enough. Graduators from the medical establishments have no place to practice in order to become qualified specialists, thus seek opportunities abroad. People face a lot of troubles, as the education level does not correspond to the level of the developed countries, additional study and a lot of practical skills are needed in order to study abroad.

Philippines law does not stipulate the medical affirmation of death, it requires only registration. The total number of population cannot be absolutely precise, as in poor regions a lot of kids are born without registration, as medical services are not available, so the births and deaths are often not recorded.

Talking about rural areas in Philippines, the access to medicaments and other pharmaceuticals is extremely poor. This is in contrast to cities, where rich people and foreigners pay a lot of money to famous private clinics. Only 40% of hospitals are governmental and 60% are private. According to statistics, there is 1 bed per 800 people. Top deceases in the Philippines are of gastrointestinal tract, respiratory tract and cardiovascular tract (25% of the total amount). According to UNICEF data “The Philippines now is one of only two countries in Asia, and one of seven globally, where the number of new HIV cases has increased by over 25 per cent from 2001 to 2009.” Regretfully only 5 % of HIV-positive women get antiretroviral pharmaceuticals to avoid transmission of the decease

According to the World Health Organization “Health expenditure, private (% of GDP) in Philippines was 2.72 as of 2011. Its highest value over the past 16 years was 2.72 in 2009, while its lowest value was 1.67 in 2001.”

Currently the situation in the health information system reflects the state of the whole health system in the country. The information on different levels from local to national is not connected. There is no power to manage and integrate it. Such inappropriate conditions result in data deficiency in sources. The system of transporting data from one level to another is not organized and experiences a lack of control from the government.

In such a way, the main problem in the Philippines health care system is a lack of governmental interest in it. The country faces a lot of troubles, people are in poverty and do not have enough money for the appropriate medical treatment in private clinics. However, the government does not develop new health care programs, does not build comfortable modern governmental hospitals, and does not invest in the development of education and next generation.

The situation in this country varies dramatically across regions. In big cities, the medical treatment is not as expensive as in the U.S. or Europe, but poor people cannot afford private clinics. Big cities are prosperous and business centers. In addition, Philippines are famous with its hospitability all over the world.

United States’ Healthcare

Talking about the United States’ healthcare system, it is manipulated by a large number of organizations, programs, and reforms (Medicare, the Children’s Health Insurance Program, the Veterans Health Administration). A major part of the U.S. Health Care is managed by private organizations. Health insurance for public organization workers is produced by the government. Old people are often insured by their family or uninsured.

In terms of life expectancy, the US is on the 50th place among 220 countries and is 78 years. However, according to the National Research Council and the Institute of Health, “the United States has the highest prevalence of infant mortality, cardiovascular diseases, genital infections, premature pregnancies.” All these factors indicate that the U.S. has poor life expectancy.

“American Health Care is the leading integrator of pharmacy benefit management, clinical pharmacy management and disease and wellness management in the nation”(American Health Care, 2013).

Financing of the health care focuses on the two streams of money: the collection of money for health care (money going in), and the reimbursement of health service providers for health care (money going out). In the United States, the responsibility for these two functions is shared by private insurance companies, as well as the government, both of which are known as “payers” in policy terms. As such, the United States can be thought of as a “multi-payer” system.

The government uses the taxes to improve and develop the health care programs, such as: Medicare, Medicaid, S-CHIP, and the VA.

The United States spends a lot of the money on the Health care. Some sources state that it has the best health care system in the world nowadays. However, it is very expensive. Not everyone can afford the medical insurance, pharmaceuticals, and surgeries. The problem is not in the availability, but in the price charged for such services.

Main Contrasting Features

United States and Philippines are rather different countries in terms of not only location, population, and climate, but also the health care systems.

The Philippines health care is underdeveloped in poor regions, or is not available for people. The American health care is structured, available, but very expensive.

Philippines can provide the health insurance on governmental level only for the 30% of its residents, while the U.S. insurance covers almost 60% of population.

The United States is a country where people want to live, which is not true for Philippines, as a lot of young people migrate to developed countries.

In such a way, the main contrasts between the U.S. and Philippines are in: government position to managing the country, quality of life, and education. Philippines have to improve these indicators in order to become competitive on the world market.

Health care system should become more structured and oriented on the poor people too. As the major part of population does not obtain high incomes, the government of Philippines should create programs to make healthcare accessible to people.

As for the United States, the level of development and excellent quality of service do not mean that the prices should be enormously high. In addition, the creation of programs for affordable insurance would be useful for people.


To conclude, the countries are rather different. Philippines are only starting to develop its potential, and the U.S. nowadays has all the facilities to become highly regarded in the world. In such a way, the Philippines health care is inferior to the one in the U.S. The material base, insurance covering, accessibility, quality of life and service are better in the United States.

Philippines is a country which launches its way to the prosperity. The hospitability, developed private sector, cheap prices and caring service will help its population to become healthier and live long.

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