Advancements in how we manage escalating healthcare costs, state budgets, and fiscal policy stall in the face of information freely available and important to the ongoing dialogue.
If we don't understand the drivers of escalating costs, waste, and access to care--or even worse--don't find it relevant, what does that say about our society?
I invite you to explore the Distressed Communities Index before attempting to understand or contextualize the evolving healthcare ecosystem. I use this information daily especially when preparing to speak in a specific state or community. I have written about The Dunning-Kruger Effect--don't let it happen to you.
The DCI combines seven complementary metrics to present a complete and multidimensional picture of economic distress–or prosperity–in U.S. communities:
- No High School Degree: Percent of the population 25 years and over without a high school degree
- Housing vacancy: Percent of habitable housing that is unoccupied, excluding properties that are for seasonal, recreational, or occasional use
- Adults not working: Share of the population 16 years and over that is not currently employed
- Poverty: Percent of population living under the poverty line
- Median income relative to state: Ratio of the geography’s median income to the state’s median income
- Change in employment: Percent change in the number of individuals employed between 2010 and 2013
- Change in business establishments: Percent change in the number of business establishments between 2010 and 2013
Too much cure, not enough prevention?
Otis Brawley, MD, the chief medical officer of the American Cancer Society states, discussing the Moonshot 2020, "It can accelerate development of more effective treatments for those with cancer, find more effective ways to prevent cancer, and find better ways to get treatments and prevention to the people."
A government that provides a society with education, clean water and air, nutrition, safe housing, and affordable healthcare must make necessary investments. The choice is whether they are able to do it the easy way or the hard way...what will you choose?