If you are stuck at a traffic light and there’s an allopathic doctor in your car, he will sell you a little hammer to knock out the red light and after the accident he will happily patch you up, all the while feigning utter surprise and ignorance about the causes of your condition.From: Reinoud Fentener van Vlissingen, MD, ca. 1967.
- The emphasis needs to shift to the patient taking primary responsibility, through prevention and/or disease reversal with Lifestyle Medicine, i.e. a Whole Foods, Plant-Based diet.
- This must include a combination of self-assessment à la the 4Leaf survey, as well as labs.
- Particularly in the personal care area, the focus comes on the patient taking responsibility and being willing to implement the necessary lifestyle changes.
- Compensation needs to shift to outcomes more than pills and procedures (treatments) wherever possible.
- By making the PCP a personal health coach whose allegiance is to the patient directly (even if through a mutual society, as proposed below), the tendency to overtreat will be reduced and any malpractice issues will be handled professionally right from the start, and most likely avoid frivolous suits and be settled quicker.
- Bookkeepers will be largely eliminated from their current roles in rationing care in the conflicted healthcare model of today.
- Society needs to come to more clarity that health and well-being is primarily about quality, not quantity, of life. Gaining a few more breaths at the end of life in a suffering body for a million dollars is not healthcare.
The Failure of Failure
Pharmageddon to me is a technical term meaning a form of medicine that prioritizes treating symptoms over cause, and therefore results in spiraling medical inflation as illnesses tend to progressively deteriorate as long as the cause is not being addressed, while the symptoms are being “managed” at a cost of increasing amounts of pills and procedures, resulting in staggering amounts of life-time medical billings.
A simple example is a heart patient. The first symptom might be ED (in men, obviously), sometimes as early as in their 20’s. A whole foods, plant-based diet might reverse the condition, often in less than a week. But medical treatment (Viagra, etc.) causes the symptoms to be suppressed and the cause to remain unaddressed, producing what could ultimately be $5 million life-time medical billings.From: I said that.
- CardioVascular Disease (CVD), probably 95% or better – the first symptom in men is ED and can often disappear in days after people change to this diet.
- Type 2 Diabetes, probably 80% or better and markedly improved prognoses in many Type 1 cases, resulting in reduced treatment plans.
- Cancer: at the very least improving prognoses in nearly all cases and complete reversals in some, c.f. Chris Beat Cancer.
- Rheumathoid Arthritis, Multiple Sclerosis, Asthma, on and on. According to some stats it boils down to 37 of the top 40 leading causes of death can be thus prevented and/or reversed with diet.
Lifestyle Medicine is the Answer
Healing occurs as a patient begins to hear the dirge he sings, and questions its validity. Until he hears it, he cannot understand that it is he who sings it to himself. To hear it is the first step in recovery. To question it must then become his choice.
From: Psychotherapy: Purpose, Process and Practice
The Holistic Approach
T. Colin Campbell’s book Whole defines the new paradigm from a nutritional standpoint, but the principle applies to all of medicine. The willingness of the patient to heal and be healed is the absolute conditio sine qua non of the healing process, but the effectiveness of the process requires a holistic approach. The currently dominant reductionist paradigm focuses on symptoms and the “improvement” from a given nutritient or pharamaceutical or other treatment, but this leads to erroneous conclusions more often than not.
The types of examples Campbell cites include such information as the fact that vitamin C as obtained from an apple, is provably 265x more effective as in the form of supplements, because of the whole nutritional matrix. This is ultimately why, in the case of almost all chronic illnesses, the first thing to do is to do the maximum possible that can be achieved with lifestyle modifications to enable to body to heal itself, before any medicine is even considered. If the situation is critical, some medical therapies may be needed for a while, but the experience is growing that often times medical treatment can be avoided altogether.
It should also be evident that the misplaced reliance on allopathic treatment, which is effectively a monopoly in America today, is in and of itself the cause of medical hyper inflation, since we are trying to do with nails what can only be done with screws – to the tune of 85% of health care spending in total being wasted. See the upcoming movie Code Blue.
Especially when you take into account the insights of Joe Dispenza’s You are the Placebo, and Amit Goswami’s The Quantum Doctor, it becomes evident that the mind of the patient is the healer, and the doctor is at best a midwife for the healing process. Therefore, one of the issues at hand is also that other treatment modalities, subject to reasonable validation, have as much of a role to play as allopathic medicine, which will lead to a wholesale reframing of the notion of specialist care – the key being what works for the patient. In Holland there is a far-reaching initiative under way and there is a website where you can find some of the fundamental information, titled Health Mastery.
At yet a different level is the focus on consciously making the choice for health and healing, and for that, I recommend Cindy Lora-Renard’s book, A Course in Health and Well-Being. Ultimately, the willingness to heal and be healed is the absolute first step. This is well understood in psychotherapy, it applies to all of healthcare.
What health plans should look like
- The best approach is probably a mutual society of primary care lifestyle physicians with the patients as members, and able to address patients who travel with effective healthcare records. The reason for a mutual society is that it is not-for profit, the members are the owners. The critical part to getting that right is creating the management structure.
- It will be desirable to a much more liberal use of other healing modalities, such as naturopathy, homeopathy and others, as long as the primary focus is on lifestyle medicine first, and the training should be such that a naturopath or a homeopath are an MD first – again they need to be your subject matter expert in navigating healthcare.
- Both self-assessment and (at least) annual checkups should be combined to help the patient achieve and maintain optimal results in all the usual parameters, and probably a few more that are not now routinely done, such as the screening for the intestinal biome, which is powerful complementary data in ensuring the patient is on track with their diet and lifestyle.
- Some basic physical therapy might belong in this layer, expecially if it is mostly of the DIY variety.
- Some psychotherapeutic assistance should fall within the primary care system, as far as assisting patients in addressing their own self-sabotage where it prevents healing.
- Some minor prescription services might be part of this level, for some things may need support of a drug therapy, or
- Instead of today’s idea of a deductible across the board, this part should be paid for by the patient as a subscription service, and this can be further supported with a tax credit as necessary.
- The mutual society should have lawyers and other subject matter experts on staff to help the patient get second opinions and other forms of supervision if they should ever need more extensive healthcare services. If there is malpractice at that level, the mutual society should prosecute the cases on behalf of the patients.
- As a practical matter this first step could be made universal with a combination of tax deductability or tax credits, but it needs to be personal, not done through an employer or the state.
Specialty care, hospitalization
The next layer is for everything where lifestyle medicine and healthy behavior do not help: accidents, infectious diseases, surgeries, and so on, this is insurance proper. This is the actual insurance plan and it should probably be a national plan and we should get away from having bookkeepers ration healthcare. This could be in part employer funded with some ability to offer optional extras and, most importantly, some rate discrimination for lifestyle choices. The current system of tax incentives for employers is fine for this tier.
A recent presentation on the workings of the UPMC (University of Pittsburg Medical Center) by Dr. Michael Parkinson, MD, MPH, FACPM, of P3 Health, under the title of the Healthy Healthcare Work Place, showed that they are already well ahead in their ability to sort out the actuarial data related to lifestyle choices. In short, eventually, it seems unavoidable that people who smoke or eat meat will pay higher premiums.
If ultimately 85% of health care dollars are misspent on pills and procedures, the opportunity exists to ultimately shift some 75% of that burden to diet and lifestyle, with only a modest need for medical support, and probably an 85% reduction of medicines that “You will have to take this medicine for the rest of your life.” A 75% reduction of this largely avoidable 85% means a 63.75% reduction of overall healthcare spending. We have got our work cut out for us, but it appears achievable.
Part of these observations overlap, but they also go beyond the work of Health Rosetta, and whoever wants background information, I can recommend Dave Chase’s two books, The CEO’s Guide to Restoring the American Dream: How to deliver world class healthcare to your employees at half the cost, and The Opioid Crisis Wake=Up Call: Health Care is stealing the American Dream. Here’s how to take it back.