we focus on solving problems by looking at symptoms, then trying to eradicate
them. If healthcare costs too much, then we find a way to reduce the cost with
subsidies or increase taxes for the rich to pay for the poor. If we see people
without healthcare, we create a government program to give it away for free. And
of course, there’s always the plan of – if we can’t fix the situation, we’ll
ignore it until it goes away or the people affected stop complaining.
even with the best of intentions, these plans will never work because they don’t
actually solve the root issues. What needs to happen is a full re-architecting
of the healthcare system. One of the first changes needs to focus on teaching,
encouraging, and focusing on preventative health. Anxiety, depression, heart disease,
and a host of many other ailments are induced by high, continuous stress. Well
known as this is, we continue to favor the ‘well-rounded student who does
everything,’ reward and encourage work-a-holic behavior, and focus on, as well
as measure, achievement over experience. In other words, it is not enough to
create access to doctors, clinics, or hospitals, we have to create a national
cultural shift that values wellness. We have to educate young people, design a
value system that views life as an experiential journey, and use the power of
the government to facilitate healthcare that starts with prevention as a
measurable pillar of the system.
If we hope to create a healthy society in mind and body, we must look beyond medicine to cure disease and begin by looking to ourselves and living a healthy lifestyle.
Photo by Bruno Nascimento on Unsplash
one thing I’ve learned, it’s that short punchlines often spoken by politicians
tell us little about how such chants can be realized. And yet, the wonk that
shares all the details bores the crowd. Where’s the middle ground? Medicare for
all is a widely shared idea but very little information exists regarding how it
would exactly be implemented. Further, it relies on Congress to allocate extensive
funds to get the existing system expanded and maintained.
these challenges, I am constantly perplexed by the fact that, not just in healthcare
but across most areas, there already exist mature programs that could address
many of these national issues, cheaper, faster, better. You might wonder why people
running for president do not know about these programs. For that matter, why
don’t Americans, who are paying for all these solutions, know about these
programs? Two simple reasons: 1) there are too many for anyone to track and 2)
government employees aren’t allowed to share information without permission.
Ultimately it means that we are all forced to make decisions with limited knowledge
and out of necessity to be short and sweet, politicians provide us with
punchlines they believe will make us vote (regardless of whether or not the stated
goal is achievable or not).
How do we
change this practice? We approach problems through a new lens and ask different
questions. We look at healthcare not just through the lens of a new law or more
money but rather by looking at the entire system and idea of health and
wellness care, combining that information with government programs already
being funded, and talk to the individuals both providing services as well as
receiving them. When we put all that information together, we have a chance of
creating a system that really works in terms of cost, care, and citizens.
National Readiness starts with ensuring our Earth is healthy but very next, ensuring that our people are healthy. When Americans are ready to learn, ready to work, and ready to live – that’s when we truly have created a system that works.
Photo by Ashley Batz on Unsplash
over a month since I posted and for good reason. I’ve been touring the country
looking for the best ideas across our nation and interviewing these experts to
create national strategies. Why? In short, it’s because I believe there is
value in bringing people together, listening to multiple opinions, and engaging
in conversation that focuses on solutions more than problems.
politicians because lawmaking is tough business that requires significant
amounts of energy and stamina to argue until a bill is passed. We need
activists because they give a voice to those who aren’t being heard. Nonetheless,
these two groups, on their own, are insufficient for long term change because
they aren’t focused on the third component needed: a pathway and plan for achieving
the goals they both set. This is why we need problem solvers. This is why we
need a third community that complements the work of the first two. This is why
politics must also involve innovators.
How do we
connect better? How do we start this conversation? How do we demonstrate
value-added? We work together. We create a community of designers, innovators,
thought leaders – and come together in a way that helps aid progress in our
Let’s get more
concrete. We need to create a virtual space where solution-oriented thinkers
can work together bringing ideas, knowledge, experience, connections, influencers,
and supporters who can generate idea abundance, curate information, and have
the community influence to drive action.
But as my professor used to always say to me…”JJ, it doesn’t matter what you start, it only matters what you finish.” We cannot only discuss ideas, we must also carry them out. Action matters.
Photo by Adi Goldstein on Unsplash