Our healthcare system should be focused on keeping people well and providing efficient and comprehensive care to those who need it. It should be about value, not volume; putting people first, not increasing patients.
One way of doing this is to support prevention. So many of our chronic diseases are brought on by lifestyle choices that can be avoided with the right education—smoking, junk food, stress, lack of movement—these are just some of the many areas we can work on to take our health into our own hands. Our delivery of preventative measures is one place we have an opportunity to improve public health. Another way is through incentives.
Dr. Toby Cosgrove, former CEO and President and current Executive Advisor of Cleveland Clinic, talks about how he did just that with great success on this week’s episode of The Doctor’s Farmacy. Incentivizing employees created major positive shifts in the overall health of the Clinic staff which translated into greater productivity and better patient care.
Dr. Cosgrove is also a proponent of using technology to our advantage when it comes to making healthcare more efficient. The explosion of knowledge and data in the medical world is both a blessing and a curse, due to difficulty in storing and accessing it, but now artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and other innovations can help us organize and utilize that information in the most effective ways. Dr. Cosgrove is currently working with Google to support this process and change the future of medicine.
Throughout our talk, we also dive into the changing paradigm of healthcare and where Functional Medicine fits in. Dr. Cosgrove believes that at the end of the day it’s all about the patient; whatever it is that needs to be done to keep them well or get them well should be the guiding principle that drives our system forward. A community-based model and the systems approach of Functional Medicine are ways we can do that.
You won’t want to miss this episode of The Doctor’s Farmacy, I hope you’ll tune in.
Wishing you health and happiness,
Mark Hyman, MD