กรุงเทพฯ–24 ก.ค.–Francom Asia
Today, many countries are burdened with the rising costs of health care. People are paying very high prices for medical services including hospitalization, tests, doctors’ visits and prescription drugs. Among the major causes of rising health care costs are the growing aging population and the growing number of people with chronic diseases, and other issues that can create a significant burden for the affected individuals, their families, and society.
Recent estimates show that 800 million people (about 12% of the world’s population) are forced to spend at least 10 percent of their income on health care. In fact, global health care spending is expected to reach USD 8.7 trillion by 2020. In Thailand, health care costs are also rising astronomically, in pace with all other countries. According to the Thailand Development Research Institute (TDRI), Thailand’s ageing society could push the country’s healthcare costs to Bt1.4 trillion per year within the next 15 years.
Prevention is better than cure – the smarter approach
Rather than spending huge amounts of money to treat diseases or other medical conditions, the better option would be the preventive approach. The first step to reducing health care costs is to educate and empower ourselves with the tools and personalized support to adopt healthier lifestyles. We can become aware of our own health and be able to evaluate our own lifestyles and the choices we make on a daily basis.
Preventive healthcare can focus on building healthy habits such as eating right, staying hydrated and getting enough sleep, and maintaining an active lifestyle that includes exercise and outdoor activities. All these are beneficial to our physical condition, from cardio-vascular health, muscular strength and bone density, to our mental well-being.
Moreover, it is essential to understand the role of nutrition and what our body needs to stay well-balanced. We must also know how vitamins and minerals help our overall health, as well as the good energy sources such as protein, carbohydrates and healthy fats. We should have a sensible and realistic view of how nutrition works for our body.
Health organizations and healthcare practitioners are also instrumental in giving advice related to staying fit, which helps in the prevention of illnesses. In Thailand, there are community centers in all provinces and districts that have health centers where we have access to information, advice and help on health and wellness.
Leveraging our networks to create a healthy environment
When we encourage and support each other to take care of our health, we are actually empowering ourselves to make choices that will have a positive impact on our future. Nowadays, we can use social media to become influential health advocates and promoters of “prevention rather than cure” when we interact and build connections with others.
Through social media, we share workouts, recipes, diets, experiences and much more. We listen to our friends and the circles we choose, and they influence our choices greatly. We can learn more about preventive healthcare, and the positive and holistic approaches we can adopt to maintain our general well-being throughout our lifetime. If we all lead an active lifestyle and make the right nutritional choices, we can keep health problems at bay and face a healthier and happier future together.