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Health care and the election

I know that many people are considering the results of the recent elections and the many implications it has on many Americans.

The one I will focus on is the impact on healthcare and the Affordable Care Act, commonly known as Obamacare. 

The concern is that the rising expense for healthcare delivery payment is projected to consume most of the new spend of the United States economy in the future. 

It is projected by some that 88 percent of the future growth in the U.S. economy will be spent in mandatory spending for Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security in the next decade. 

Not only is healthcare spending an increasing expense, with the U.S. spending the most per capita on healthcare, but the outcomes are not better than other westernized countries. 

In fact, our life expectancy  is still several years behind many other countries, our mortality rate from heart disease, amputation rate from diabetes, and rates of obesity, are still among the worst in the world. 

President-elect Donald Trump has been publicly transparent about his goal to repeal the Affordable Care Act with a different approach. One that will involve more of a free-market approach with some assurance of being able to get healthcare for pre-existing conditions. 

What does this mean for West Virginia and the United States?

Well, obviously, the details are not known and changing something as complex as healthcare delivery legislation in one swoop seems to be difficult. However, I think this is getting at something more foundational. 

Our current system of healthcare delivery (rescue from failure) is failing as the sole approach to helping our population live long and good lives. 

We need to integrate health and healthcare. In my opinion, health is what we do in our real lives. 

It is built by a culture and community of love, safety, hope, connections, purpose and gratitude. 

While we need to approach the high rates of smoking, drug addiction, obesity, we also need to do more that is much more foundational to us. 

That is us as a state and as a country. 

We need to return to our roots as humans. As families of love and safety. As communities of hope and opportunity. 

We need to care for our healthcare workers as much as our patients, as we are all part of the same frame of health.

We are following the Robert Wood Johnson culture of health approaches of creating a culture of health, bottoms up, as a movement. A movement of hope and health. 

That will reduce spending on healthcare delivery, improve outcomes and make us the model for the world. 

That is a movement worth joining.