The Future of Health

The future of health

What would you like to know about the future of health?

In 2015, Jeremy Jacobs, billionaire owner of the Boston Bruins, pulled together a team of high-level writers to look into what will happen with sports 5, 10 and 20 years down the road. The goal was to get people talking. The result was The Future of Sports report.

Jacobs is also the founder of the Jacobs Institute and key donor to the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University of Buffalo. In 2017, he decided to fund a new report focused on The Future of Medicine. That report predicted a coming pandemic! It also predicted significant impact from climate change on public health.

The Future of Health Report

The latest Jacobs Institute report, released on January 16, 2024, covers The Future of Health in the United States. It is easy to read and remarkably concise.

Here are ten items which caught our interest:

  1. Primarily because of COVID and opioid addiction, from 2019-2022 average life expectancy dropped from 79 to 76, ranking the US 34th among countries worldwide. Average healthspan remains at a paltry 63 years. There is optimism for meaningful healthcare improvement coming soon. By 2040, these are expected to shift to 83 (longevity) and 80 (healthspan) respectively, providing huge productivity benefits to the global economy.
  2. If current trends continue unchecked, we are on track for a shortage of 139K doctors and 1 million nurses by 2035. Fortunately, virtual reality and augmented reality solutions will help train new doctors. AI and robots will take over tedious tasks to speed up care delivery. However, there is still a huge bottleneck in available residency positions necessary to onboard new doctors.
  3. The primary point of care will shift from doctor’s offices and hospitals to 10K new primary care outlets coming soon provided by retail companies like Walmart, Walgreens and CVS.
  4. US annual healthcare spending is $5T. A switch to value-based care could save $20T by 2040 while improving wellness considerably.
  5. Worldwide climate change-related negative health effects cost $800 billion annually.
  6. Cancer survival rates are up 10% since 2018. There are 20,000 clinical trials in progress funded with hundreds of billions of dollars.
  7. 1 in 5 Americans have mental health issues. 1 in 6 have substance abuse disorders. 3 in 5 adults have at least one chronic disease.
  8. The EPA’s Toxic Substances Control Act Chemical Substance Inventory (TSCA Inventory) February 2024 update contains 86,741 chemicals, of which 42,293 are active. Check out The Pollution Within, a 2006 article by David Duncan on testing to find hazardous chemical compounds in his body. Fortunately, our bodies can survive low levels of them. Do what you can to live within a clean exposome!
  9. Your risk of death or severe disability varies depending on your behavior. For example, your future if you proceed as-is versus following a healthy lifestyle could have a heart attack risk of 70% vs 2%.
  10. In the future, will people remodel their microbiomes to be like elite athletes? Fitbiomics has compared elite athletes to normal people and  translated their key elite microbes into probiotics in an attempt to reduce fatigue and keep people more active to prevent disease. Also, their pill claims to improve sleep quality.

The Future of Health Conclusion

The future of your health varies considerably depending on your life choices.

For more insights into the future of health, consider attending an upcoming longevity conference featuring anti-aging experts, or stay tuned for more Keep Health articles summarizing interesting findings. 

As your reward for reading this article, go find out even more by reading some areas of interest in the online The Future of Health report. There are some very cool digital images to go with each short article. The graphics alone make it worth checking out. And if you are wondering, yes, Dall-E generated the inspiring one for this article.

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