Population size alone is inadequate to determine the healthcare needs of a state, region or country. There is need to determine the demographics of the area to ascertain the exact healthcare needs of the population. These demographics can help in assessing the right healthcare products that can be introduced into a market (Pol & Thomas, 2012). Market analysis is a key aspect of product placement allowing companies to bring the right product that appeal to the population. The paper analyzes the demographic profile of Florida (a state with a unique population demographics) to provide insight to the healthcare needs of the state.
The American Census Bureau estimated that Florida has a population of 20,612,439 people as of 2016, accounting for a 9.6 percent increase from the 2010 census. An estimated 5.4 percent are children under five years, 20.3 percent are people under 18 years, 54.9 percent are between 18-65 years and 19.4 percent are people over 65 years, as shown in Figure 1 below. In regard to gender, 51.1 percent of the Florida population is female while 48.9 percent are male (United States Census Bureau, 2017). A review of the racial demographics shows that 77.7 percent are Caucasian, 16.8 percent are African-American, and 2.8 percent are Asian (United States Census Bureau, 2017). The main health problem that Florida is facing is a large number of those who are overweight to obese. For instance, in Florida, 74 percent of the people between 18-65 years are overweight (Florida Department of Health, 2017).Two in every three adults is overweight indicating a high obesity rate. Diabetes, coronary heart diseases and hypertension have increased in the state, too. Likewise, in children, one in every three children is overweight.
There are 303 hospitals in the State of Florida. Out of these 213 of them are community hospitals, 90 are private hospitals and 93 are non-profit hospitals. The state has a 67,081-bed capacity with the majority of them (55,968) in the community hospitals. Private hospitals account for 19,518 while non-profit hospitals have 26,478 beds (Florida Health Association, 2013). There are 25 community hospitals and 27 psychiatric hospital closures in the States since 1995. Patient care volumes show that there have been 1.3 million outpatient surgeries and 671,787 inpatient surgeries. Patients have been discharged 2.6 million times. There are 8.7 ER visits each year and 11.8 million patient days. The most common causes of admission according to Florida Health Association (2013) are psychoses and digestive disorders, accounting for 204,975 and 116,537 cases each. This is followed by COPD and Heart failure at 65,505 and 62,774 admissions each year, respectively (Florida Health Association, 2013).
Demographic analysis shows that Florida has 19.4 percent of citizens over 65 years old. An estimated one in every three people over 65 years has a pre-existing condition. Additionally, 3,116,000 under 65 years also have pre-existing conditions in the state. It seems that there are a large number of people suffering from chronic conditions (Insurance Journal, 2016). The conditions that cause the largest number of admissions are heart failure and COPD. These chronic conditions seem to affect Florida more than most other states. Florida has the third highest population of people with pre-existing conditions in comparison with the other states, only following California and Texas (Insurance Journal, 2016).
Currently, healthcare institutions are well suited to deal with cases of heart failure, COPD (lung problems) and diabetes. However, these healthcare institutions are not offering solutions to the underlying problem of obesity. Considering 74 percent of the population is overweight, there is a need to deal with these issues to reduce the cases of life-threatening lifestyle diseases (Florida Health Association, 2013). The government has tried to create some lifestyle initiatives, and they are expected to decrease the percentage of overweight individuals to 65 percent in 2017 (Florida Health Association, 2013). However, this is still significantly high. It presents an opportunity to introduce Bariatric surgery as an alternative to those who are unable to lose weight naturally through diets and exercise. The treatment can first involve weight loss medication, and if this does not decrease the weight within a specified period, the patients can be given the option of Bariatric surgery.