Battling the Growing Healthcare Crisis
Healthcare is undergoing rapid change—both in terms of delivery and policy. Stressors related to funding as well as obtaining qualified candidates will continue to affect delivery of care. Add to this, skyrocketing chronic disease rates and you have the perfect storm. According to data released in 2018 from the United Health Foundation:
- Chronic disease deaths, (contributing to the nation’s premature death rate) increased for the fourth straight year, driven by suicide and drug deaths
- Drug deaths jumped 25 percent in a single year from 2017 to 2018
- Cardiovascular deaths have steadily risen since 2015
- Obesity is at an all-time high, doubling in adults and tripling in children in just under a decade, according to the CDC
- Mental distress measured by the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) increased 7 percent from 2016 to 2018.
- More Americans than ever report poorer health – in fact the incidence of health distress is on the rise, showing a 5% increase in a two-year study.
These record-breaking stats point to a growing need to address the root causes of disease with evidence-based therapies based on lifestyle modifications in that areas of diet, exercise, sleep and stress – also known as Lifestyle Medicine. Runaway costs are forcing a greater emphasis on prevention. According to the American College of Preventive Medicine:
- 86% of all healthcare dollars spent go to chronic conditions
- More than half of US adults have at least one condition, accounting for 90% of healthcare spending
- The Federal Congressional Budget office estimates that if costs continue to rise, by 2050 Medicaid and Medicare alone will account for 20% of the GDP