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Fixin' Healthcare

Monday, February 05, 2007

Transformation Of Healthcare - A Muscular Public Health

Transforming health care involves the creation of a system to achieve and maintain optimum health status for every individual and the community. The three primary elements of the system are health and safety promotion; risk management and prevention of disease and injury; rehabilitation. Furthermore, this system must be developed while retaining and refining the capability of medical care to diagnose and treat people who suffer with illness, disease and injury.

This task can be initiated by converting the medical record to a health record. The health record would be based upon identification and management of health risk with provision for identifying and managing health problems. Informing and educating would be another function of the health record applied to consumers and health professionals.

Another route for transformation would restructure health education to create a dedicated program for education of enhanced primary care practitioners. These practitioners would function in teams for extended care throughout the community. The program would encompass all of primary care and include public health. There would be crossover between health education and medical education but the emphasis would differ. Some institutions of higher education should consider merging their schools of medicine and public health.

Every individual would be enrolled in the health care system for their community with oversight at the state level. Each individual would participate in the development of an electronic health record with controlled access on the internet. A health plan would be created for each individual and administered throughout the community.

It is a dream, but not a bad one. Not impossible, either.

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