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When does health become an issue?

illness-wellnesscontinuum-adjusted

In Sustainocracy we define five core natural and human values that are a continuous responsibility of any society and its members. One of these values is health. If we look at the drawing above we see a neutral point defined. That is the point where an individual does not sense an illness and takes his or her degree of wellness for granted. Health is a matter of fact, just like breathing or a heart beat, it does not require thought or a sense of responsibility. If we place this neutral point in our Societal Context the question arises when health does become part of awareness? In general the answer is “when we become sick”.

Within the current Societal Context we have created a lifestyle and political-economic reality that produces social differences, pollution, wars, climat changes, destruction of landscapes, etc. In reality we produce an increasingly unhealthy environment. This means that the neural point rapidly moves into the wrong direction. As a consequence of our behavior we tend to become sick faster and faster. Around the treatment paradigm an huge structure of health care has been built with very large investigation institutes, control mechanisms and bureaucracy. The structure has been economized meaning that the citizens need to pay for healthcare through taxes, insurrance and direct payment. We hence pay the bill of our lifestyle and polluting societal context. Premature death is not just something that affects the individual but also the entire species. Costs of healthcare are rising exponentially and cannot be covered anymore by the majority of people. A change is needed, but how?

When we get back to the neutral point it becomes clear that we should not wait for things to go wrong with our health when signs of sickness appear, we should take proactive health measures to adopt a wellness driven lifestyle. This needs to be achieved through awareness and education. But how do you engage people to something that does not exist yet in their reality? How do we address wellness with massive amounts of people who seem to live life with a different set of priorities?

With these questions in mind 5 groups of international students of the University of Technology (Health and Technology) started to define projects in which they try to involve large groups of people in the paradigm of Wellness. Their challenge is to provide Proofs of Concept by testing their ideas in a real community and analyse the results, both of their estimates and what reality showed.

Five projects were defined:

  • Smoking prevention in high schools
  • Burnout prevention among teachers and students
  • Lifestyle of students
  • Integration of foreign students
  • Clean city logistics by stimulating clean truck driving

 

 

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