The US, like other advanced countries, has a Sick Care system masquerading and being promoted as a health care system. The
The US, like other advanced countries, has a Sick Care system masquerading and being promoted as a health care system. The large majority of resources go to sick-care, people are trained to be Sick Care technicians and technocrats, and our education system is designed to beat students into Sick Care conformity. Politicians hype Sick Care because the returns on healthcare are longer than the election cycle.
In the meantime, the burden of non-communicable diseases (NCD) threatens to bankrupt countries and create economic and political instability in already fragile low-medium income nations.
So, how do we address the NCD threat, and change our sick care system into a Health Care system?
1. Change the rules. Access and reimbursement policies should reward disease prevention and health maintenance.
2. Change how we educate a 21st century healthcare workforce, providing them with the bioentrepreneurship, digital health, and population management knowledge, skills, and attitudes they need to serve their communities.
3. Target research and development funds to chronic diseases.
4. Create innovative non-brick and mortar care delivery channels that are easy to use, cheap and accessible.
5. Empower patients to take control of their care and information e.g. using Open Notes.
6. Encourage appropriate DIY medicine and use behavioral econometric techniques to change behavior.
7. Support patient entrepreneurs.
8. Give patients the information, resources, networks, and incentives to take care of themselves and other family members.
9. Create an integrated health information whole product solution that is patient centric
10. Use social media and other consumer facing platforms to change behavior.
Sick Care will bankrupt us. The keys to the kingdom belong to those who can create imaginative, innovative ways to change to a Health Care system and solve the riddle of the last mile — how to change human behavior.