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Christina Nesheva

GlaxoSmithKline plc

TEDCRED 50+

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What is the future of healthcare? How can it become health care vs sickness treatment? What role do technology and innovation play?

Healthcare costs are rising, the population is aging and medical needs are greater than ever. How can patients receive better quality care at an affordable price? How can we leverage technology to provide better and more affordable healthcare around the world?

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  • Oct 19 2011: Personal responsibility is, in my view, the key to health. Many people, myself included, take our health/ wellbeing for granted, until everyday life is interrupted by illness. I've learned through illness that maintaining my health is key to me enjoying and getting the best out of life. It's taken until my 40s for me to learn this lesson even though I'm a healthcare practitioner who has been studying & working in health care for 17 years.
    The challenge I see is communicating this effectively to people across the planet. People in societies with more money should have more resources to tackle this but ironically health concerns such as obesity tend to be higher in the developed, economically better off world.
    Technology is improving but talk of things like 3d printers coming up with ready made organs sounds like fantasy at present but may become reality- possibly at a huge cost. Healthy solutions need to be cost effective for individuals for them to be feasible for society otherwise there will always be a divide between the haves and have nots.
    Prevention agendas, in my experience, tend to focus on preventing particular illnesses, diseases or illness producing behaviours such as smoking which focusses the mind on these illnesses rather than wellness.
    There's a lack of focus on the paradox that is both the joy of health and the inevitability of death that can focus peoples awareness on their individual circumstances and responsibility... to themselves and their own futures.
    • Oct 20 2011: Harish,

      You have identified an important distinction which we need to make when talking about preventive medicine: prevention of particular illnesses vs general health or well being.

      The first type of prevention is for genetically biased illnesses of diseases and the second is for the general public. If someone's family members have been identified for a particular genetically related diseases, preventive measure should be taken for each and every members who may be affected.

      General public awareness of health and the benefit of being well should be communicated to the public and must not be overwhelmed by misinformation (in form of advertisement of bad food). To prevent the overwhelming of misinformation, corporations should be held responsible for the claims they make in any advertisement and held corporations to moral guidelines to the same standard we held moral guideline to persons. If anything, corporation's moral obligation should be set higher than personal because they have the resources to properly investigate the statements they are making is evidence-based. CEO or executive officers of corporation should be held responsible *personally* for *repeated* false statements.
    • Oct 20 2011: For you to take responsibility early before 40s, you would probably need more information when you are 6, so at the end the problem becomes more a shared responsibility with others: health policymakers maybe?!

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