We've been hearing about it and CNN did an excellent report on it. The rising rate of healthcare in the USA has gotten extremely out-of-control. Ok, we've heard about the $27,000 single dose of a drug, the $200 pill. The special report revealed one family's tragic battle with cancer then facing a $4300 bill for a four day hospital stay. The list of expenses included items as low as $100,000 for treatment of stroke/year to $125,000 for heart disease/year, to $175,000 for year's in-house treatment for Alzheimer's .
Americans with healthcare concerns have now started to combine their vacations by including surgeries in other countries to reduce the burden of healthcare costs.
These top diseases mentioned earlier in the list are either all preventable or their burden of load to overall expense could be lowered by a Total Healthcare Package(THP). The THP is not too different in principal than a health insurances' total comprehensive care program , but goes further by blending it with the practitioners idea of Wholistic Care. It means that practitioners refrain from sub-compartementalizing their view of medicine and accept the realization that "a person's health is still within the same body"! This is what was not mentioned in the 2010 healthcare legislation. This 2nd portion is the "practical" application.
What this means is that health isn't based on "degrees of sickness" anymore , but rather ranges of wellness through making health not merely a part of your lifestyle but a part of your total life, sun up to sun down.
It means that Fitness, Nutritional Support(Nutritional Supplements), Prevention Education, Behavior Motivation, Wellness have to be utilized in unisom. The special area of Nutritional Supplements is gravely under-utilized and has been highly made suspect even when it was born out of two highly respected disciplines, medical biochemistry and botany.These 5 key points must be somehow a part of a persons home life, leisure life, work hours, and those times in- between.
These key 5 points are essential to reducing and preventing chronic and acute disease and their costs. Numerous public health statistics as well as clinical trials have shown overwhelmingly that changes and modifications of one's eating, activity, self-imagery, being informed and more aware of health can enact reduced healthcare costs based on a person becoming more responsible for his or her own health.
But, how does a country of over 300,000,000 effect this change in lifestyle as almost like a single unit. It can not be done easily or quickly, but it can be done reasonably. Why do I say that? Because the National Institutes of Health( N.I.H) intramurally and extramurally as well as the CDC, HHS(Health & Human Services), PHS(Public Health Service), World Health Organization, several colleges and universities, Wall Street(insurance companies) , Madison Avenue(advertising agencies) and several food and drug corporations have already done the research to prove that THP could work and are constantly sampling the population in real time to show it's daily effects.
If a consensus is met on standards of "wellness" stemming from these 5 key points of THP ; it could reduce healthcare cost directly and indirectly by reducing "The Mother of All Diseases", obesity! The real fight is fought at the belt line ; where the primary line of defense has to be placed.
We started this blog taking a look at the reported costs of "treating" disease. The real question auditors , acturaries and cost valuators need to be asking is "what is the cost of implementing prevention"!
Learn more about the 5 points of THP at http://www.tgx360.com/
Dr. Marcus Wells MD, MPH is a past Clinical Associate at the National Institutes of Health/National Heart, Lung, & Blood Institute. He served in the HHS(Health &Human Services), the PHS(Public Health Services), and the Commissioned Corp. Dr. Wells also holds a Master's in Public Health from Emory University.