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Allie Talk: When It Comes to Your Health, Be the Early Bird

Think back to the last time you went to the doctor for no specific reason. You weren’t sick, you didn’t have any weird aches and pains, and you weren’t suddenly having trouble sleeping. You just wanted a little performance review of your health to find out how you were doing and if there were any tweaks you could make to improve your wellness.

If you’re coming up blank, you are definitely not alone. Managing disease rather than optimizing wellness has become the mission of the American healthcare system — but it wasn’t always like this.

As recently as fifty or sixty years ago, most people had a primary physician who acted as the point person for their medical care. This doctor was often a part of the community. They knew who your parents were and what illnesses they had. They knew if you were playing sports or if you were going through a particularly stressful time at work or school. Your doctor would have had the full context of your health without you having to fill them in on your history from start to finish during every visit.

But over the past few decades, our lives and societies have changed. This type of community-centered care has largely dissolved as the world has modernized (much to the chagrin of the town busybody, who has also become a relic). Today, it’s rare for people to see the same primary care physician for decades, if they even see one at all. Most treatment is left to specialists and most doctors, pressured by the demands of our insurance system, provide lightning-fast visits focused on treating problems and diseases rather than helping you achieve your best health.

It’s become a vicious cycle: a doctor takes a quick look at your symptoms, gives you the most likely diagnosis, and writes a prescription to fix it. If that doesn’t work, the cycle starts over again. There is minimal effort spent on getting to the root cause of why these symptoms or this illness popped up in the first place.

At Veracity, we believe that healthcare should focus on optimizing your whole health, not just treating you once there is a crisis. Healthcare shouldn’t be a game of whack-a-mole.

To me, optimizing health is not about being 100% perfect; it’s a way to focus on where you have the most opportunity for improvement – and for that you need the full context. It’s like revamping your work day to maximize the best parts and minimize the things that frustrate you the most. You deserve to have your health and wellness given the important, personal dedication it deserves, and you deserve access to the tools you need to treat it as such.

We may not be going back to the time of close-knit towns and community physicians anytime soon, but that doesn’t mean we have to make our peace with the broken healthcare system as it exists today. It’s my personal mission through Veracity to think about how everyone can have access to the tools they need to optimize their health and live their best, most happy, and fulfilled lives possible.

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