Chapter

Health Care Utilization

Stephen J. Kunitz

in Disease Change and the Role of Medicine: The Navajo Experience

Published by University of California Press

Published in print September 1983 | ISBN: 9780520049260
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520909649 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1525/california/9780520049260.003.0006
Health Care Utilization

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This chapter discusses changes in the use of hospitals and clinics since the 1920s. The utilization of hospitals increased rapidly during the 1920s and 1930s as the number of beds increased. The health services literature is generally concerned with the impact of the health care system—financing, organization, and manpower—on utilization. Improved therapy has increased the acceptability of hospitalization. Changes in the health care system have affected changes in the hospital utilization patterns of elderly people. Despite the fact that the distribution of discharge diagnoses still differs considerably, reflecting the higher incidence of infectious diseases among Navajos, there is good evidence that changes in Navajo social organization and morbidity patterns are reflected in the way hospitals are used. Health care was increasingly available from the 1950s through the 1970s.

Keywords: health care; hospitals; clinics; financing; organization; manpower; therapy; Navajos; Navajo social organization; morbidity

Chapter.  9718 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Medical Anthropology

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