While most of the attention in the health zone is being sucked up by the latest attempt to repeal ACA and replace it with God knows what, there exists a disturbingly high number of health related issues that never seem to get the attention they deserve.
So I thought I would remind us about a few of them — (would love to hear from others–what else should be on this list?):
- Hunger: do you have any idea how many children go to school hungry? How many older people do not get enough nutrition? How many homeless people and people living in poverty go to bed hungry?
- Hospitals’ tax-exempt status: what are hospitals giving back to their communities? If they aren’t, why do they still maintain non-profit status?
- When we talk about Quality in/of health care–what does that really mean? Are we delivering quality health care and if not, what can be done?
- Patient’s rights/wishes–do people really understand what they should/can be asking/demanding? Are individual’s wishes being honored, especially at the end of life?
- Workforce–are we training and maintaining adequate health teams–if not, what can we do differently? What/who should the health workforce of the future include?
- Young adults with chronic diseases–we don’t often “see” or know about 14.5 million young adults who struggle everyday–to stay in school, to work, to attain/maintain independence?
- Mental health services–where are the beds? the services desperately needed?
- Increasing women in real health care leadership positions (C-suite; boards; equity partners) and related to this, Increasing access to capital for women innovators
- Violence against women (and girls); sexual assault (civilians and military)–we are so far from where we need to be on this one
- Bias: how best to conquer unconscious bias in delivering health care to individuals who may be “different” from the health care practitioner–gender sensitivity/language challenges/socioeconomic status/race/mental health status
None of this is easy. We have to keep pushing forward.