Looking after your health is a bit like looking after your car – it needs maintenance, fuel and rest.
Imagine if you fed your car the wrong fuel or neglected to maintain the engine. It is unlikely your car would go the distance or be in your life for very long.
Your health is the same, so why is it then that we neglect to take care of ourselves and be active participants in our health and well-being?
At St.LukesHealth, we believe there are three aspects of health.
These pillars support each of us to achieve health and wellness, manage our medical conditions and get the most from our encounters with health professionals.
We believe health is made up of these three pillars – it’s just that when we are younger our focus is more on wellness and as we advance in years, illness becomes more the consideration.
It is easy to take for granted the simplicity and fluidity of life and unfortunately it is only when we are faced with illness that we appreciate it.
So, how well do you think you currently manage your health? If Tasmania’s health statistics are anything to go by, it could be better.
Your health can be complex and as that complexity rises so does the prospect that mistakes can be made.
About 70 per cent of all mistakes in medicine are the result of information not being available when a decision is made.
There are similar challenges in the health system with up to 30 per cent of GPs unaware that one of their patients has been hospitalised.
We are seeing many advances around personal health and many of these are being driven by changes in technology and communications.
In the US, 15 per cent of consultations with health providers are now virtual using audio or video facilities. Around 80 per cent of consumers and providers rate this experience positively.
Some have predicted that within five years’ half of all interactions with health providers will be using these techniques.
So why am I telling you this?
Currently many of us do not have an overall vision of our health. Documents sit with our doctors and most of this documentation is in paper form meaning it can be easily lost in the system.
How is it that your healthcare providers hold your health record and not you? Yet you are the one that needs to manage your health on a day-to-day basis.
Personal health records are becoming the mode by which you can have all your health information at your fingertips.
This may include information about allergies, illnesses, surgeries, immunisations, tests and screenings results. It may also include information about medicines taken and health habits, such as diet and exercise.
Home devices, including fitness trackers and other smart devices can also contribute to how we manage our health.
Imagine if you could have all your health information at your fingertips on a smart phone or other device. Now that is exciting.
You can ensure your body is receiving the right fuel and the right maintenance. This is where the future of personal health really lies.
Later this year St.LukesHealth will introduce a unique personal health record solution for members and others to manage all aspects of their health.
Watch this space!