Healthcare or Disease-care?
I am increasingly disturbed by our modern notion of “healthcare.” Is it really healthcare? Or would it better be termed, disease-care? Regardless of title, it is womb-to-tomb medical care system that seems to be falling short of delivering health, while focused on managing disease.
As we look around us, our society is plagued with chronic pain, fatigue, mental illness, obesity, gastrointestinal maladies and immune deficiencies more than any other progressive culture.
Are we genetically deteriorating or could we be witnessing the consequences of a lack of authentic health-care (that is, care of our health)? We continue to strive to mop up the floor as the sink overflows, yet we neglect to turn off the faucet – namely, that which leads to disease.
In this country, we have been led to believe that routine procedures and checkups represent good management of our health. These may include prenatal ultrasounds, pediatric wellness checks, routine vaccines, annual adult physicals, pap smears and mammograms, colonoscopies, cholesterol and blood sugar checks, blood pressure monitoring, etcetera. Often, these routine procedures are classified as “preventative care,” but when you really think about it, what exactly does poking, prodding, and testing really prevent? In reality, the purpose of these procedures is to pre-diagnose a potential health crisis such as cancer, fetal abnormalities, heart disease, diabetes, and sickness. Procedures don’t prevent anything. They pre-diagnose and give us a boost of confidence that we are still not victims of some disease.
So why are we so obsessed with procedures? Fear. Fear of sickness, abnormalities, disease and ultimately, death. However, fear that motivates us to pursue health and wellness can be positive.
Health concerns us all. It is a personal and a national problem. Unfortunately, we take our health for granted until we are confronted with a crisis that we can’t control. It is then that we begin to realize that we have not escaped the years of stress, abuse and neglect of our personal health. At this time, we surrender ourselves to the authorities of disease-care and wish that we had really given more than lip service to prevention.
We must get back to the basics. What we put in our bodies will affect how they run. Nutrition, exercise, stress-management and detoxification are the foundation of true healthcare. Routine procedures that search and find abnormalities are the foundation of disease-care management.
In reality, authentic healthcare is based on the belief that the simple choices we make in our lives, each day, can make the most powerful differences in our future, the future of our children, and society as a whole.