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Health care

(Redirected from Healthcare)

Health care or healthcare is the delivery of medical services by specialist providers, such as midwives, doctors, nurses, home health aides, vaccination technicians and physician's assistants. Health care is one of the world's largest and fastest growing industries and professions. Usually such services receive payment from the patient or from the patient's insurance company, although they may be government-financed or delivered by charities or volunteers, particularly in poorer countries.

Health care can form an enormous part of a country's economy. In 2000, health care costs paid to hospitals, doctors, diagnostic laboratories, pharmacies, medical device manufacturers and other components of the health care system, consumed an estimated 14 percent of the GNP of the United States, the largest of any country in the world. For the G7 countries the average is about nine percent.

Health care services include preventive care, vaccination, diagnosis, prescribing and administration of medicine, surgery, observation, and attendance at childbirth.

Prior to the popularisation of the holistic neologism healthcare, English-speakers referred to medicine or to the health sector and spoke of the treatment and prevention of illness and disease.

Health care by country:

See also

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