The [healthcare] sector is no longer asking whether it is necessary to address the realities of patients’ lives as an integral part of care delivery, but rather how to do so effectively.
Rebecca Onie highlights this and other important shifts in the global conversations on health in her recent op-ed “Do It Yourself Health” on Forbes.
For millions across the world—including the United States—the harsh reality is that a lack of basic resources is the primary limiting factor to achieving and maintaining good health. At this year’s World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, which Rebecca attended as a Schwab Foundation Social Entrepreneur and World Economic Forum Young Global Leader, she and other leaders reimagined healthcare delivery during the panel “Do It Yourself Health.” More specifically, panelists, including Kaiser Permanente CEO Bernard Tyson; musician, activist, and member of the Skoll community, Peter Gabriel; and Dean Linda Fried of Columbia’s Mailman School of Public Health, discussed what combination of high- and low-tech innovations could inspire health and wellness—and really focus on prevention—rather than simply combat illness.
Notably, these conversations reached far beyond this single panel. At this year’s Annual Meeting, leaders from across sectors and disciplines acknowledged that global health, in many forms, depends on how we think about healthcare delivery. More importantly, they recognized that in order to more effectively deliver care to focus on total health, we must consider what goes on in a patient’s life outside the clinic walls. In Forbes, Rebecca writes:
This year’s World Economic Forum acknowledged this new paradigm, naming health as one of the prominent pillars of the week’s agenda and stating that ‘The time is right to elevate the conversation on health …. As we ask how metaphorically to improve the economy’s health, literally improving the population’s health is a good place to start.’ A commitment to health shouldn’t be revolutionary – and yet it is, after decades of an entrenched and nearly single-minded focus on healthcare.