The need for a better world, for healthier people and happier people all over the world is still as big as many years ago. Even bigger. Maybe even more pressing. Promising solutions and trends are present everywhere: conferences, books, in the media – we are advanced, we have created high tech, the dream that Millennials and the right education can change the world, a different business thinking, reunification of social and business world. We seem to be on a good way. ARE WE?
A closer look at e.g health makes me hesitating. The basic health issues are the same, some areas have become better, many others worse. Without doubt: even in the poor countries the number of non- communicable diseases such as diabetes and cancer is growing rapidly. Fast food, less movement, environmental issues and loss of efficacy, e.g due to antibiotics resistances are the main factors.
So, what to do?
The debates on how to help the best seem to be very modern: technology, health apps, a new way of thinking and doing by putting the patients into the focus.
But, a fact is that there are more than 90,000 health apps available, but only less than hundred are really used more than thousand times a month.
Fact is that those who need health education and access are still difficult to reach. Who does invest? And let’s be fair: at which level? We share what does not “hurt”. But the power balance, the decision makers are still the old ones.
Many ideas are new, some of them are interesting such as social entrepreneurship (but there are still huge gaps in creating sustainable financial models behind at a large scale) It is complex, real pioneers are needed. Some of the “new” ideas are very old, instead. And probably right, but never implemented consequently. Because if so, we would live in a different world today. The “Millennials” of the 60ies, 70ies, 80ies, … We had our ambitions, too, hadn’t we? And we have changed some critical facts – in one or the other direction.
A few days ago an old friend gave me a book from the 70ies, called “Where there is no doctor. A village healthcare handbook” by David Werner. A bestseller at its time, and often reprinted.
I was very astonished to find many modern. trendy hints on how to do:
“Work first for the people, not the money. ” – the social entrepreneur belief
“Look for ways to share your knowledge.” – prevention is key
“Because you know modern medicine it does not mean that you should not appreciate the human customs” – the human touch
-“a village health worker in a larger sense is anybody who helps to make his village a healthier place (parents, teachers, shopkeepers, farm people…) – the holistic approach, the Eco system idea.
– “use local resources wherever possible” – integration and involvement
– and: “a good teacher helps others to build on their own ideas, not one who puts his own ideas into other people’s heads”.
We have so many ideas, so many apps, so many dreams. But we still fail.
Maybe because it’s still too much about us. Us? That’s the generations of big business, incredible technology, sophisticated concept and strategy investors and a ‘dream for better’ generation.