How Google Proved I’m Right

The title of this post won’t win me the humility award of the day but Google’s insight about Diabetes and Heart disease proves why my White Paper is still on target. America’s leading tech firm, Google, can’t even get the details of two serious illnesses right.

google search result health information box 9-4-16Diabetes and heart disease are almost entirely weight related illnesses (not enough room to describe here but it is exploded in the White Paper). The epidemic of obesity is not a secret and yet the treatments recommended in Google’s health search box depicts the solutions commonly discussed. These solutions keep individuals sick, mask symptoms and provide little long term hope for those with the illness.

I applaud Google for recently adding these informational boxes. As the article linked explains Google recently added health information boxes for 900 health conditions.

The concept is spot on but the execution is terrible, at least, it’s terrible for the two samples I show in this post.

If we’re going to repair our nations healthcare system, easy access to accurate health condition information is a critical improvement that is needed. Only 1 in 20 searches are health related but that was enough for Google to make the investment in creating these health info-boxes.

The information provided is incomplete, it’s incomplete because it doesn’t tell those with the condition what their options are beyond conventional methods. There’s not room in this post to talk about those other options but we explore it in the White Paper.

Rationing

However, I made this post to use it as an example of what I call rationing. Our current system controls healthcare information which in many cases can be detrimental to the health of an individual. If you control information, your rationing options. Incomplete information about a health condition is clearly an example of how rationing already exists.

There is an economic cost to this bad information and unsuspecting employers and individuals will continue to pick up the tab. There’s outrage about cost but no discussion about real solutions. Watch my video about the system and why it will perpetuate itself unless change occurs.

Look for more to come as we discuss the US healthcare system the costs and solutions. But, first follow our posts and look for the White Paper in the  future.

 

Psychology of Food

An American Food Journey

People should be put ahead of profit. I’m a business owner and would like more profit, but not at the expense of people.  Well, that statement will send people zooming to another site. But, some read-on and those are the one’s ready to hear the message.

Are you still reading? That’s amazing. I’m not making a mass appeal, but I want to make the connection for people that our food profits are costing us more in healthcare premiums. Yep, our food system is making profit and sending people to the hospital in record numbers. Think it’s not true follow my white paper – owners health initiative.

25 years ago

my sister Patti said to Linda and I, we should drop sugar. Really, I said, what kind of hair brain idea is that I thought? Instead of engaging in a meaningful conversation over a bowl of ice cream, I, just like most people, did the only rational thing. I ignored her. We went on to talk about the kids, hers, mine weren’t born yet.

Okay, so I demonstrated what I call the psychology of food. What do I mean? Food is one of the last places of freedom. I mean, no body is, or was, going to tell me how or what to eat.

Don’t tell me what to eat

Disability is now a disease
Disability is now a disease

Americans do not want to be told what to do and food is a place where individuals can exert their independence. Who’s against that? I’m not, but, if you’re premium is increasing because people are being diagnosed with obesity as a disease (recent health news – see today’s google search image).

For a limited number of us, obesity is a hereditary issue, but for most Americans  I think our food production system and profit is the problem (conservatives did you leave?). I’ve recently watched “Food, Inc.” and you should too. Then, I watched Aziz Ansari, comedian, poke fun at food but makes a good point. I merged both together into a 3 minute clip on food, watch for it on the Ben-TV channel (once I get their approvals to use their video). Or just watch them, their both on Netflix.

If obesity has an ally who or what would it be? If there is such a thing as an ally to obesity who wants that? Maybe a better way of thinking is, who is the enemy to obesity?

Not just my opinion

Our government makes bad decisions on topics like this. They don’t use science, they use popular, attractive notions to sooth the public (liberals did you leave?). Well, the public is you and me and if obesity is covered as an illness watch out for the coming tsunami of cost baked into your premiums. As a medical economist I guarantee you this recent policy change will increase our costs. Over the last 28 years in this business I’ve watched awful public policy and we’re not changing the way we make decisions and everything we try to legislate isn’t working. And, frankly, neither party is offering suggestions (did conservatives and liberals leave now?)

Is anyone still reading?

Trusting politicians and political decision making with our healthcare, medical system and food system is not a solution.

The problems in this country can be viewed in many ways. If you’re liberal big company profit is bad. If you’re conservative, pandering to the poor and lazy is bad. Really? Are these the only positions? While the off the chart right and left argue the problems just get bigger.

Obamacare is not solving the problem and never will and republicans don’t have an answer.

I like my white paper – owners health initiative.

Oh, what about my health?

Fortunately, I have a great internist and a homeopathic Doc arrangement that is working quite well. I struggle with weight but otherwise am in good shape (for those using the numbers, I’m a BMI of 28, not great but okay). BTW – I did drop sugar and other things. Oh, about those movies, last summer we dropped regular chicken in favor of what Linda and I call, “happy chicken.” If you watch the video’s or my clip if gets approved, you’ll drop unhappy chicken.

Integrated Health isn’t new

Our healthcare “system” isn’t a system at all. It’s a bunch of pieces cobbled together. Payors, government, hospitals, pharma and others participate in an unorganized delivery of medical care. This is an article pointing us in the right direction.

“Some of the insurance companies are slowly, gradually coming around,” said Jeff Spicher, the center’s Primary Care Clinic director. “Part of the issue, in my opinion, is that in this country we typically have set up a system that is a disease-based system, not a health-promotion system.”

Read more at http://gazette.com/insurance-coverage-gaps-create-health-care-challenges/article/1543737#XklC1EQHupUzP6BT.99

Physicians should lead the effort toward integrated health and not government, payors or others.

Rise of the flex economy

Employer benefit plans need more attention from benefit professionals and seasoned benefit professionals want more flexibility in their work

BenStaff, short for benefit staff, solves two problems at once. Employer benefit plans need more attention from benefit professionals and seasoned benefit professionals want more flexibility in their work while being paid a good wage. BenStaff does both.

Our professionals can do in 10 hours what many multi-tasking HR admins do in 40 hours. We dedicate and monitor the work of our benefit professionals to ensure quality management, avoiding common mistakes.

“The rise of the independent workforce is reshaping the life-Screen Shot 2014-08-26 at 7.41.40 AMwork balance for thousands of Americans and altering the relationship many others have with their employers.”

Read the article, “Flex Economy

Top jobs:
#1 Construction manager, $39
#2 Accountant, $30/hour
#3 Material moving machine operator, $25

Our BenStaff benefit professionals fit nicely into these pay ranges. Interested in hiring one of our experts, call Don, interested in coming to work at BenStaff? call Don.

A calculator for employers to estimate their cost of smoking and overweight.

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Alere Health Calculator for Tobacco

For the first time there is a company whose providing end-to-end health services in a single system. They’re able to research and create products across 100 diagnosis groupings, offer instant diagnosis and testing improving results and speed to diagnosing. This includes at home testing that’s fed directly to physicians and hospitals.

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Alere Health Tobacco calculator

But, what’s really exciting is their entrance recently into the informatics and population management environment with services connecting the health of tested populations at home with science based, legitimate research based incentives for engaging health.

Calculator link