It is simple.

Before I lay out exactly “what” is simple, I want to say; I have received help with my writing. I have read books, taken classes, sought feedback. I haven’t actually learned the mechanics of better sentence structure yet but hey, progress not perfection.

Two things I realized – I don’t read enough. I used to hoover up books like a vacuum but somehow that got away from me. That shall be repaired.

and

I think in terms of, and therefore write on what prove to be; a few central themes. I come back to them repeatedly.

I now want to leave those themes behind and find new areas to explore. Less systemic analysis- more heart-centered openness.

In support of that allow me to make today’s essay, this re-visit to a theme, my goodbye to all I repeat. (Wish me luck) It’s my attempt to begin to leave behind older themes and grow new-er (for me at least) themes.

So bear with me here we are on a bit of a journey. Today’s “simple” is: Every wealthy nation in the world has universal health care, except the United States. This essay has ample links – as a resource – for all of us to lean on as we watch these issues play out nationally.

With a single-payer, value based, universal health care system you save money while building health. This is not a debate. The data is massive and incontrovertible. The debate is a mis-direction so we do not see our own demise.

Here and here are a couple of breakdowns on this, the first one a synopsis from a former Secretary of Labor.

We do not need to spend more money to grow health-including behavioral health. We need a different system. Those with vision and experience have already designed it-at least in their collective heads and hearts.

US health care/medical statistics are abysmal. We spend 5 times the money for one-fifth the outcomes. Outcomes mean health. We are very sick in America. Not necessarily you or me but throughout the land we have large pockets of horrible health.

For example: our maternal healthcare statistics-including death rates for newborns-have moved into third world categories and what study shows is the relationship between that issue and all the other health care issues (such as obesity, drug dependence/addiction, etc.)-because everything in life is related!  All My Relations.

“Since 1990, the global {that’s the rest of the world} maternal mortality rate fell by almost half while ours went up – actually doubled.”

We simply don’t have to be this sick. We have dug a deep hole, we have sunk low, yet in numerous countries around the globe (and in some pockets of this country experimenting with outcome-based systems you see much higher health with significantly lower cost while doctors and other professionals still make a good living.

When doctors and hospitals and medical groups are rewarded for good outcomes they are motivated to address underlying issues which often involve treatments that are cheaper.  Here’s a snapshot of how that looks and feels.

Win-win-win. Except of course for some corporations. None of this happens without reigning-in drug companies. Here’s a YouTube walk-through of some of Pharma’s contributions. We’ll come back to that another time. (Here’s a clue–other countries, their single-payer healthcare system is centrally based (government) while our health care is employer-based (private)-which makes the US the global cash-cow of Pharma and Insurance)

This is so patently clear to anyone willing to open their eyes and look I’m reluctant to post more links but feel compelled for the sake of those who may be uninitiated in all this. Here’s a glossary if you desire definitions.

First; universal health care is essential because we are not a medieval torture chamber (yet) meaning; if we don’t treat the poor and very sick, plus those suffering from addiction and mental illness, they end up in our emergency rooms, jails and other inappropriate locations, costing much more than we need to spend or would spend if we were committed to building health. That’s a major part of our high healthcare bill. I know from being one of those poor, addicted, using services, ending-up-in-ER’s people.
Second; it’s been studied and estimated repeatedly; we spend some 20% of our total health dollars in the last two weeks of life. Another way to look at it: Why more than half of America’s healthcare spending goes to five percent of patients”

5% = 50%$?!

This has to do with our unnatural relationship with death and all that means.

But let’s back up. Here are big-picture breakdowns here and here that walk us through the fallacies of relying on a fees-for-service payment system when it comes to health care. Fees-for-services is a proxy term for free market economics.

Related issues include wasteful and unnecessary medical care while multiple pathways to fixing this are known to us.

As stated before, I have witnessed these programs enacted in cities out west and seen the savings those municipalities have earned-in the millions-within a matter of two-three years.

By the way, these abysmal health care stats apply to behavioral health:
Overdoses the leading cause of death among Americans under 50.

We – the US – are under 5% of the world’s population yet consume over 75% of all opioid pain pills manufactured on the planet!!

I can pile up tons more evidence-based analysis if you insist, but ultimately;

It’s simple.

I have to add; this is not about politics. I am not a Democrat-or a Republican. I could care less about that. Really. What I do care about is helping grow recovery and the virtue of efficiency.

“Healthcare has always been about something bigger than politics-it’s about {our soul growth and} character…..”

California-taking risks as a lone state effort-is striving to initiate single-payer health care as we speak.

These issues are all about fiscal responsibility-getting the most for our dollars while minimizing waste while growing a more productive, supported yet self-reliant population. Technically, that would mean value-based, single-payer is on-track for a Red/Republican/conservative agenda, right!?

To be clear; we don’t need to spend more money, we need to stop letting various monied interests (behind the scenes) run our policy-then build a visional, experienced system of recovery supports for life while busting stigma in creative (non-shaming) ways.

This is about doing the right thing, for the right reason and no one has the franchise on that. We-as a group-do. The People.  “The conscience of an informed group is God’s Will on Earth.” If the term God’s Will is problematic for you, think of it as “For the greatest/highest good of all”.

We have a say in all this health-building. A decade ago a drug company constructed the largest factory ever ($600 million) in the history of mankind to manufacture one drug. Know which drug? I bet many of you reading could probably guess.

Insulin. (story here) (Harper’s magazine did a monolithic meta-analysis years  back-and it is now only available online to subscribers)

And when it was all said and done, they admitted that ultimately there was only one statistic needed to make that decision, to build that factory.

The per-capita sugar intake of America. Which we estimate is one-half to one cup of sugar per every man, woman and child in the country. Whew!

We can’t fight addiction if we keep lying to ourselves.

It is only when we face the truth before us that we can begin to use the words hope and change.

Seeing the truth gets us half-way home.

So let’s acknowledge that we individuals have a part in all this. We do need to participate in our own health-building. Our own recovery. We need to eat right, exercise, do mind/heart work. Which means we start by avoiding most of our heavily-advertised-at-us food supply and grow food streams of local organic veggies, etc.

Thanks for letting me share with you. Now on to heart-centered topics. Wish me luck.