Healthcare Economics and Nursing Practice

Micro- and macroeconomic considerations can be pertinent to healthcare. Microeconomic factors refer to the individual or organizational conditions that tend to affect supply and demand (Allender, Rector, & Warner, 2014; Hammaker, Knadig, & Tomlinson, 2016). For example, an individual’s or a family’s income may affect their access to healthcare or their decision to employ specific services. On the other hand, macroeconomic factors are concerned with larger-scale conditions that may include, for instance, inflation, unemployment, or recession (Allender et al., 2014; Hammaker et al., 2016). Naturally, the two are interconnected.

In my practice, I have been mostly focusing on negative economic conditions. For instance, I have seen how income can affect a person’s healthcare-related decision-making, forcing them to forgo the services that might be needed, especially if they are not perceived as strictly necessary. Similarly, I have noticed that the shortage of staff is often concerned with insufficient payments that, in turn, may be the result of macroeconomic issues like the 2008 recession.

Thus, the macroeconomic problem can lead to direct healthcare issues since, just like any other resource shortage, understaffing tends to affect the quality of care in a negative way (Twigg, Gelder, & Myers, 2015). The provided examples demonstrate that an advanced practice nurse needs to take into account the economic perspective on healthcare.


Allender, J., Rector, C., & Warner, K. (2014). Community & public health nursing. Philadelphia, PA: Wolters Kluwer/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins Health.

Hammaker, D., Knadig, T., & Tomlinson, S. (2016). Health care ethics and the law. Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Publishers.

Twigg, D., Gelder, L., & Myers, H. (2015). The impact of understaffed shifts on nurse-sensitive outcomes. Journal of Advanced Nursing, 71(7), 1564-1572. Web.