The common narrative is that the price of healthcare is the problem. If we right-size the price, then care becomes more affordable and we spend resources wisely on something that has true value. There is truth in that statement...to a point. But the lead article in this digest points to the larger, stickier, more interesting and frankly, more imperative question: what are we doing to achieve health for Americans? In my mind, price is an end-stage problem and one that is a symptom of a misdirected system.
If we focused on what makes us healthy first, would we prevent disease, improve quality of life, avoid costly end-stage interventions and redirect the industrial innovation engine to products and services that actually match need and produce better results? I’ve spent my career in various "seats" asking this same question and answers still elude us. The wider conversation about social determinants of health and prevention is a welcome growing trend. We need to spend more time and energy to accelerate such thinking in our care delivery, payment and policy "transformation" efforts.