Problem & Solution

A National Crisis in Health Care

Americans already spend over $3 trillion per year on Health Care. That’s nearly twice as much as other industrialized OECD nations, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), but we live sicker and die younger. Why is that, and can it get any worse?

John Green, in the following YouTube video, describes the complexity of the healthcare problem in just 8 minutes, covering much of what Steven Brill wrote about in his 38-page TIME magazine special report, Bitter Pill: Why Medical Bills are Killing Us. Hold onto your hats, because there’s a lot to cover in such little time.

Unlike a Health care system, our nation’s Sick care system profits when we’re sick, and the incentive is to keep us as paying customers; so the system works to manage disease and treat symptoms while other parts of government subsidize agribusiness and processed foods and ignores poverty and environmental contamination.

All of this contributes to our high costs, which will get worse as 10,000 Baby Boomers a day reach age 65, retire and expect more technical miracles. They’re already starting to retire and take Social Security and will soon increase the healthcare burden dramatically, because of the way we provide care today. The senior population is expected to climb from 49 million today to 83 million by 2050, so a dramatic new approach is needed, and its urgency is critical. See statistics.

Modern Solutions for Home Health

As our population ages, we must address these rising costs by creating personal, networked, home-based care options and move at least 50% of health care services from hospitals, nursing homes, and assisted care facilities to homes. As Intel’s Eric Dishman says, We need a “Going to the Moon” type of effort to reduce costs with technology solutions that enable home health care and aging in place.

But as solutions and care options evolve, how will individuals learn about what’s available? This will depend largely on a community of individuals sharing experiences with the new home health care technologies and services. That’s what provides – a way to plug into Modern Health Care options.

Health Care as a Team Sport

When Eric Dishman was in college, doctors told him he had 2 to 3 years to live. That was a long time ago. One rectified diagnosis and a transplant later, Dishman puts his personal experience and his expertise as a leading medical tech specialist together to suggest some bold ideas for reinventing healthcare — by putting the patient at the center of a treatment team. (Filmed at TED@Intel)

A Combined Vision

Besides providing a community to introduce and discuss new solutions for home health care, Modern Health Talk will work with other organizations to better understand care needs and evangelize universal design for better products and services. In the video below, Continua Health Alliance shares a vision where smart devices are networked to help us maintain our health, monitor older relatives, and manage chronic diseases.