A significant portion of our national budget goes to pay for healthcare. With the focus of our government in reducing expenditures to reduce the national debt, it is expected that there will be reductions in government spending on healthcare. Many Baby Boomers are entering the age when they will start using Medicare and this is a concern. Articles show that jobs are increasing at a rate of 25% in the healthcare market, but some feel this is not necessarily a good indicator since the goal is to reduce healthcare spending. More and more effort is being placed on providers to become more efficient in delivery of healthcare services, especially in light of the fact that the United States ranks 37 in quality of health care of the industrialized nations despite being number 1 in healthcare costs.
Perhaps, more attention and money should be spent on expanding prevention and wellness programs since most of the effort is now aimed at extending insurance coverage and decreasing the growth of costs through improved efficiency. There is even a movement to decrease or eliminate tests that show limited efficacy. Some movies/books are showing impressive results in reducing heart disease, diabetes and arthritis with changes in diet, exercise, stress reduction, improved sleep and attitude.
Another strategy is to have each individual take responsibility for improving health one step at a time. Anything is better than nothing and making changes in your routine can be done systematically and easily. Start walking a little more; park the car just a little farther; stand and do a little exercise while watching TV; eat a few bites less with each meal; drink a little more water; drink less soda; laugh a little more; go to bed a little earlier; talk to your friends and watch a little less TV. You can do a lot of little things on a daily basis to improve the quality of your life. Wouldn’t you rather be a little healthier with better blood flow to your brain, possessing stronger muscles with more flexibility, while looking and feeling a little younger? You have a choice and you are in charge of your life.