How I Feel About Healthcare

Australia spends roughly 8.5% of GDP on healthcare each year.  That, my friends, is a lot of money.  In 2007, our GDP was $637 billion; 8.5% of that being a sweet $53 billion or so.

Then lets take a look at how much of that is spent on looking after people with preventable disease.  The graph below plots the 10 leading causes of disease burden:

 

*DALY counts equivalent years of 'healthy' life lost due to poor health or disability and potential years of life lost due to premature death.

*DALY counts equivalent years of 'healthy' life lost due to poor health or disability and potential years of life lost due to premature death. Source: AIHW: Mathers et al 1999. The burden of disease and injury in Australia. AIHW Cat. No. PHE 17. Canberra: AIHW.

Looking at the list above, I’d say three things account for the disease in most cases:

  1. Poor dietary choices.
  2. Smoking.
  3. Sedentary lifestyle behaviour.

“Oh, but its my genes…,” or “I eat perfectly well,” or “I don’t have time to exercise,” or “I only smoke on the weekend,” or “Its not my fault, it can’t be due to the things I’m doing…”

Sound familiar?

Healthcare is necessary – absolutely.  But a lot of it is not.  Imagine what else that money could be spent on if everybody only bothered to look after their most important asset – their body.  Your best healthcare policy doesn’t consist of Medibank or Medicare.  Your best healthcare policy consists of the following things:

  1. The right information.
  2. A good diet that stems from point number 1.
  3. Regular exercise that also stems from point number 1.

The best healthcare you can get is by spending time and effort to empower yourself to make choices every day that support your health.  Choose to be proactive about it instead of only dealing with things when you’ve come apart at the seams and something major has gone wrong.  The old adage is absolutely true – an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.

Yup, the majority of healthcare is your responsibility, not the government.

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4 Responses to How I Feel About Healthcare

  1. Saranovita says:

    An impressive share, I just given this onto a coellague who was doing a little analysis on this. And he in fact bought me breakfast because I found it for him.. smile. So let me reword that: Thnx for the treat! But yeah Thnkx for spending the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love reading more on this topic. If possible, as you become expertise, would you mind updating your blog with more details? It is highly helpful for me. Big thumb up for this blog post!

  2. Sophie says:

    , No, because he isn’t braihteng. My husband wasn’t even give the option to cut the cord, and the baby was wisked away. TOTALLY devastating. Although I realize she was panicked that the baby wasn’t braihteng, I don’t understand why she didn’t even wait to clamp the cord (my husband said she did it right away, even before I noticed) and let the baby try to breathe on his own while the placenta oxygenated the baby and transferred the remaining blood to him. I am SO ANGRY about this because 1) the baby was taken from me almost immediately! 2) The baby was later taken again (after about 2.5 hours) due to respiratory distress, then admitted to the NICU. I did not see him for almost a whole day because I lost so much blood (more on this in the next section) and was too weak to even get up (I was hypotensive and nearly fainted twice, went into shock once). Bonding was totally destroyed and it was difficult to have those overwhelming feelings of love that I expected to feel. Instead, I experienced horrible feelings of guilt and depression, and at four weeks postpartum now, I still don’t feel as close to my baby as I wish. It is a huge sense of loss for me.5) About 5 minutes after giving birth, I noticed my midwife gently tugging and shaking on the detached cord, telling me that I’ll be all done once I push my placenta out. I was thinking, Why is she tugging, and why isn’t she waiting for me to contract again and for my baby to help that with breastfeeding? But again, I was so out of it from 18 hours of labor and delivery with no sleep or food that I didn’t say anything. I wish I had!!! I pushed out the placenta within 10 minutes with no contractions, but pretty soon I was getting poked in the thigh with a shot of pitocin, getting painful pushes on my belly to push out blood clots repeatedly(while the baby was on my chest), then getting misoprostol suppositories (which I later discovered was cytotec ugh!). I was also hooked up to pitocin intravenously for hours and hours afterwards. I found out afterwards that I had an estimated blood loss of 600 mL no wonder I couldn’t get up without nearly fainting. The nurses had to use smelling salts on me. I was too weak to go to the NICU to see my newborn, from whom I was separated only 3 hours after birth. I felt like a total failure and cried nearly all day long for a week after I came home. I am left wondering that whether or not the active management of the birth of the placenta was what caused my bleeding, or what kept me from hemorrhaging to death. I have a feeling that the breaking of my waters was at least part of what caused a whole cascade of problems for me, which makes me so angry at the midwife, who seemed too much like the OBs I was trying to stay away from.I apologize that this comment was so long, but I’ve been agonizing about this for the past few weeks, wondering whether or not I should talk to my midwife about this or file a complaint (which seems rather futile because of so many gray areas). I can’t decide whether to thank her for helping me to have a VBAC (because she was very encouraging when she wasn’t being the OB’s puppet, and to her credit, she was more willing to listen to me than the doctors were.) or let her have an earful when I go to see her at my check up in a few days. What’s difficult about this is that no one knows what the outcome would have been had I gotten my way on everything. Maybe breaking my water did speed up labor and help my son to be born more quickly? Or maybe it made everything worse. I do understand, though, that the midwife probably did have my baby’s and my best interest at heart. In any case, this birthing experience, which I had hoped would help me heal from my emergency c-section experience, turned out to be much more traumatic, and I find myself looking forward to my next birth. I would appreciate any comments, opinons, or words of wisdom. Maybe midwives out there could shed some light on my experiences and help me to let go of some of these feelings of being robbed what I feel could have been so much better.Thanks!

  3. levitra says:

    Push vs pull … we need to do both. Ditto virtual and IRL. The former is no more than another medium for talking heads until it translates into action at the grassroots, or rather perhaps, capillary level. The technology for electronic voting is there but, as you suggest, not yet come of age, and we’re not ready to use whatever means are available.

  4. Greetings from Idaho! I’m bored to tears at work so I decided to browse your site on my iphone during lunch break. I really like the info you provide here and can’t wait to take a look when I get home. I’m surprised at how fast your blog loaded on my mobile .. I’m not even using WIFI, just 3G .. Anyways, wonderful blog!

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