Our healthcare system needs a major overhaul. Having learned what I have learned just in the last few years has opened my eyes to how our mindset needs to change – how our system needs to change.
I am not generally someone who would shout from the hilltops or lead a protest. But now I understand how the healthcare system (both in Canada and the US) is so heavily influenced by big money and the pharmaceutical companies. The net effect of this is that many health screening tests and treatments are not in our mainstream system. The big dollars go to symptom and disease-management, not wellness-management.
There are so many, lesser known, effective, non-invasive and natural and well-researched tests and treatments that most people do not know about. These are generally offered by small companies who just do not have the marketing dollars.
The person who has the interest, motivation, time and money can discover really effective healthcare options outside of mainstream. But how do you know if an alternative option is safe and effective? What if it is snake oil? That’s the challenge.
- The area of holistic healthcare is definitely a passion for me. ‘Holistic’ meaning taking care of the body, mind, spirit, and emotions.
- Managing your health using an integrative approach is also a passion of mine. ‘Integrative’ meaning using both conventional/western (ie: surgery, pharmaceutical drugs) and alternative approaches (ie: natural treatments, acupuncture, food as medicine, supplements, etc) as appropriate, where the doctor and patient are partners in decision-making.
There are more and more integrative wellness clinics opening up here in Vancouver, BC. It’s exciting to see. As I talk to people about this subject, I have definitely seen a shift in thinking and people are waking up to the fact that mainstream healthcare often fails us, treating the symptoms and not the root cause of illness, and sometimes makes us even sicker with drugs and their side effects.
I would like to highlight Connect Health, a wonderful centre in Vancouver for integrative and functional medicine (root cause approach). They have a wonderful team of professionals who have a new vision for health care. Dr. Lawrence Cheng and Dr. Ashley Riskin are the founders and clinical directors of Connect Health. I was very impressed with them the first time I met them. They are emergency doctors in a hospital and at the same time run Connect Health with the right approach, and have trained with Dr. Andrew Weil. They impressed me so much that I am proud to say that I now teach meditation through their centre.
Please read a wonderful article ‘How wellness can save health care’ about Connect Health and their approach. I have sent many friends to Connect Health and my friends all enthusiastically thank me for referring them.
Is there a call to action in this post? My request is that when it comes to your health, be open and then curious to non-mainstream approaches. Have the courage to seek. Understand that there is a lot out there that works beyond your traditional doctor’s office. Start discussing and discovering options with your friends and family.