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How Often Does One Plan for Health?

17

Jul 2014

How Often Does One Plan for Health?

Contributed by Laura R. Novakowski Why is our health always the last consideration? It seems that most often we plan vacations and parties. Next, we plan for schools, careers and retirement? However, studies too numerous to mention indicate that most people don’t proactively plan for health until they are struck by a disease. Now, consider this… Building a Well Workplace: Six Reasons Why Health Promotion Makes Good Business Sense Source: WELCOA – http://www.welcoa.org/wellworkplace/index.php?cat=1&page=1 REASON #1: Although we spend more dollars on health care than any other industrialized nation, our citizens are not the worlds healthiest. REASON #2: Much of the illness in the US is directly preventable. REASON #3: Healthcare costs are an issue of significant concern. REASON #4: The work-site is an ideal setting to address health and well-being. REASON #5: Recent empirical research validates that health promotion programs can improve health, save money and even produce a return on investment. REASON #6: More and more companies are building world-class wellness programs.   Finding the Right Tools Finding the right resources, products and services now seem significantly more important. The right tools don’t have to be costly. In fact, the costs of them are significantly lower than the cost of hospitalization, rehabilitation and medications. Here are the three most obvious tools: Medical Profession – Tradition health care is still an invaluable tool. Annual visits to a health professional are less costly than Emergency Room visits. Physicians, Nurses, Therapists, Dietitians are a resource that needs to be carefully selected and a positive relationship developed and nurtured to help overcome present and prevent future health issues Complementary & Alternative Health – According to National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, complementary and alternative medicines are “The array of health care approaches with a history of use or origins outside of mainstream medicine.” Focusing on symptom relief, complimentary and alternative…

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03

Jul 2014

Harnessing Data to Improve Health

Family- centered care, patient-centered care, and engagement, are the “buzz” words in health care today. What this means is there is a coordinated effort by hospitals and public health officials to use electronic medical records and give individuals’ access to their records in order for them to manage their own care. Studies show that engaged individuals have lower healthcare costs, less medication mistakes, and better health outcomes. Individuals, who are engaged in their healthcare, collaborate with their health provider in decision regarding their care and treatment options. Communication and time constraints often hinder the concept of engagement. Many are intimidated by their health provider, lack the skills necessary to communicate effectively, and with only a15- minute office visit, usually can’t get all their needs met. Using personal health data and a health management tool could bridge that gap in communication. Using the Right Tool Today, there are new apps and electronic devices being developed every day to track your health. Their use, however, is limited. While technology is great, it comes with its’ own challenges. Most technology is information based only and does not provide for education or individualization. It cannot assess, evaluate, or build on acquired knowledge. It also eliminates a group of people who do not use technology, such as the elderly. A printed document however, can be personalized, interactive, educational, and shared with a health provider during a visit, social support network, or a team of specialists. Sharing documents in this manner breaks down the barriers usually associated with ineffective communication such as lack of confidence, and lack of knowledge. An Opportunity for Health Promotion It is our opinion at Health Promotion Associates, LLC, that a shift in the way we promote health is needed. The principles of individual engagement involve a set of skills that supports…

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