Why are access to care, cost of care, quality of care important to health policy?   

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jraineharrison eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Access to care, cost of care, and quality of care are some of the basic components of health care policy.  Many of the health policies in the United States and around the world center around these three areas.  

Access to care refers to an individual's ability to get health care services.  Access issues include having a facility nearby, having transportation to get health care services, or having the appropriate providers available.

Cost of care centers around a person's ability to pay for health care services.  Issues surrounding cost of care may be lack of insurance, socioeconomic status, employment (or lack thereof), and the cost of the services being provided. 

Quality of care policies try to ensure that patients receive good care once they are able to access the care and afford the care.  These policies are interested in making sure patients receive the right care at the right time for the right patient.  They also try to ensure that providers follow best practices to be sure the patient is treated appropriately.