A one-size-fits-all parable for health care reform

Today's entry come courtesy of David Drinks at the Carlisle M.O.G.
What's a MOG? Well, you can check that out HERE.

The story has been told of a civilization that lived by a lovely river at the base of a waterfall. One day a stranger suddenly plummeted over the edge of the waterfall into the foaming water beneath.

The people were alarmed and sent their two best swimmers out to rescue the person. Although they succeeded, it was not long before another person washed over the falls. As the people staged another daring rescue, they decided to station a boat at the base of the waterfall.

As time passed, strangers continued to wash over the falls. Rescue efforts increased. Soon, a small building was erected which contained emergency supplies. Designated people were on call for rescues.

Despite their efforts, the number of strangers being washed over the falls continued to rise. A hospital was eventually built and rescue efforts became more sophisticated.

The people were perplexed, but continued to respond to the demands of the victims of the waterfall. An even larger hospital was set up, along with a fleet of professionally trained rescuers. At long last a true visionary posed the question.

“Why don’t we go upstream and see why these people are falling over the water fall?”

- - - - -
While there is wisdom in going upstream to resolve the source of a problem, our health care system remains largely focused on reactive care. In fact, the U.S. Federal Health Care dollar spends ninety-five cents to remediate problems and only five cents to prevent them from occurring. We're scratching our heads, staring at the base of the water fall, while the system is being overwhelmed.

There is no question that there is great value to many of the modern healthcare advances. However, the problem we face is one of proportion. Many choose to disregard their own health and well-being only to rely on medical professionals to “fix” them when something goes wrong. This approach is convenient for some, costly for all, and unsustainable.
Now, more than ever, there is need to shift to a new level of thinking. Our society must leave behind the idea that personal health can wait while we pursue everything else in life. Instead, there has to be a focus on a living well balanced, where no part is sacrificed at the expense of others.
Over the past several decades there has been major growth in the field of wellness. The widespread benefits of healthy lifestyle choices continue to be refined. Beyond merely recovery from illness, the goal is to help guide individuals further into a state of awareness, education, growth, and ultimately high level wellness.
The wellness trend is bound to continue. However, individual responsibility is essential. You and everyone else truly does stand to benefit (and save) when you shift your gaze to the top of the water fall!

It is refreshing to seriously consider exercise and nutrition as important for not only avoiding illness, but as part of a bigger well life vision.  More than preventing disease, these are essential components of a well life that fosters growth and all around wellness.

A well life is more than being saved from the waterfall. It's thriving above the cliff!

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