You only have so many dollars to go around, so it’s important to know where to spend your dollars to get the best return. But why here? Why in Canada? We, in Canada have a socialized healthcare system so it would seem that spending money on your personal health is redundant. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
Consider first that our healthcare system is reactionary. Also important to acknowledge is that you are more likely to develop a chronic illness than to have an episode that is acute in nature and that is a “one off”. Most of the dollars spent in our healthcare system is on chronic illnesses that are the result of lifestyle and poor results of the social determinants of health. In short, the “current system” is not interested or prepared to deal with keeping you from developing things like: diabetes, high blood pressure, COPD, cancer, cardiac disease, etc.
Lets first make the assumption that you don’t want to get or be sick, especially with a chronic disease. Given this is true, then it is reasonable to consider how you should spend dollars on your health.
Beginning with the basics, acknowledge you are currently spending money on some of the basics that contribute to your health. These are collectively known as the social determinants of health:
- income & social status
- employment, education
- safe physical environments
- accessing social supports
- developing coping skills and
- having healthy behaviours (sleep, exercise, nutrition).
They are important to provide the basics of good health for you and your community.
The next place you may already be spending your money on your health is the gym or community health memberships, yoga classes, or another type of class focused on your physical fitness
Both of these are very important areas to consider as part of your health spending and just as important is to know exactly where your own personal risks are. How do you learn this you might ask? These might be blood tests to determine your cardiac health, or diabetes risk, or even a spirometry lung volume test to ensure your lungs are in good working order. Just like standing on a scale, these tests provide you with a better look at the real risks to your health.
At the Vibrant Life Project these tests provide some basic information, and when coupled with our wellbeing assessments we are able to assist our patients to identify, mitigate and create lifestyles.
Your health, your money! Spend your healthcare dollars on the things that will create value over the years.
Don’t know how, contact us.