May 23, 2022

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“COMFORT” BY AMIR KHADAR/WWW.AMIRKHADAR.COM

Click here to download this article as it appears in the magazine, with accompanying artwork.

This article is from the Winter 2021 issue of the Nonprofit Quarterly, “We Thrive: Health for Justice, Justice for Health.


What might healthcare look like if the profit motive were removed from the provision of care altogether? If healthcare were designed as a public service, what possibilities would exist for health equity, health system resilience, and reduced costs? The multiple crises of our current healthcare sector, laid bare by COVID-19, should move us to ask deeper questions about how our investments into the healthcare sector should be employed to maximize the health and well-being of our people and economy.

There are, sadly, few bright spots in a system that has allowed more than one in five hundred Americans to die due to COVID-19.1 Many readers may be surprised to learn that one of the few highlights in healthcare performance during the pandemic comes not from the nation’s richest hospital systems or biggest names in medicine but from the poorly understood and often maligned Veterans Health Administration (VHA).

The VHA—the country’s only fully public, integrated healthcare system—has a lot to tell us about how a national healthcare service for the United States might operate, and not just for its performance amid COVID-19. Indeed, combined with other public healthcare institutions, it could prove to be a critical institution to achieving health justice.

While the new is often fetishized, sometimes the most effective and feasible models are not new; they just need dusting off so that we can see them for what they are. Healthcare as a public service is one such model, and the VHA could help jump-start a revival of this model today.

 

U.S. Healthcare in Crisis

The COVID-19 pandemic has brutally exposed the weaknesses of the nation’s fragmented, inequitable, and extraordinarily expensive healthcare system. In the early days of the pandemic, as revenue from elective procedures cratered, many health systems furloughed staff, cut their hours, or reduced pay, even as demand for emergency care due to COVID-19 exploded. Many hospitals resorted to rationing care, and some shuttered altogether. Increasingly, we are witnessing the collapse of U.S. healthcare, as multiple crises—including lack of rural hospitals, shortages of physicians, and overpriced treatments—collide.2

Hard though it may be to believe, today healthcare consumes almost one fifth of the entire U.S. economy. This is far more than most other advanced economies, even as health outcomes fail to match this extraordinary expenditure.3 Life expectancy in the United States has been declining for years, and existing health inequities have only been exacerbated by the pandemic. To do better requires changing how the nation finances, administers, and allocates healthcare resources.

The VHA’s pandemic experience provides some valuable lessons. When COVID-19 hit, the VHA, rather than contracting, expanded to meet needs. It opened its doors to accept hundreds of nonveteran patients and sent staff to assist in non-VA hospitals and nursing homes. By

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December 16, 2021

Refreshing plan up to date to incentivize fresh new grocers toward minimal-profits neighborhoods

Overall health and Exercise amendment will simplicity regulatory burdens on gyms, spas, and licensed therapeutic massage therapists

NEW YORK—Mayor de Blasio celebrated the Town Council’s approval yesterday of two zoning actions to make improvements to wellbeing equity during New York Metropolis. 1st, an update to the Foods Retail Enlargement to Assistance Well being (Clean) method now supplies a zoning incentive for substantial-high-quality grocery stores to additional decrease-revenue neighborhoods than ever just before, growing accessibility for healthier foodstuff for New Yorkers. The next, the Well being and Health Text Amendment, gets rid of out-of-date zoning boundaries to opening gyms, spas and certified therapeutic massage therapy, aiding these industries recover extra promptly from the impacts of the pandemic.

“New Yorkers are worthy of far better entry to all the necessities and amenities that make our neighborhoods great sites to stay, do the job and play. That means generating fresh foodstuff and health and fitness services additional accessible than at any time,” claimed Mayor Monthly bill de Blasio. “These zoning changes will make our town far more livable, and they will make a significant influence as we combat for a restoration for all of us.”

“Using our zoning and land use resources to make a more healthy New York Town is a significant portion of a good recovery. I’m delighted to see the passage of these two zoning actions that incentivize new grocery merchants and clear away boundaries for overall health-relevant compact companies,” explained Deputy Mayor for Housing and Financial Progress Vicki Been. “Thank you to the Metropolis Council and the partnership throughout Town organizations that built these proposals a reality.”

“The COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the necessity of overall health fairness in New York Metropolis. Irrespective of whether it is bettering accessibility to superior-good quality foods, specially in underserved neighborhoods, or creating it simpler for wellbeing-connected modest firms to open up and thrive in our business corridors, the overall health of New Yorkers really should be at the forefront of our perform. Thanks to the Town Council for approving these two zoning measures and setting us on the route to a more healthy, happier metropolis for all,” reported Department of City Planning Director Anita Laremont.

The New system commenced in 2009 to produce zoning incentives for property proprietors in underserved communities to establish a bit larger sized properties in combined household and business districts if they integrated a Refreshing supermarket. Today’s enlargement provides the zoning incentive to 11 additional decreased-revenue Local community Districts in the course of the town, like Staten Island for the initial time, on top of the 19 districts the place it now applies. Each new Refreshing retail outlet is also envisioned to produce 30 to 100 local positions.

With this approval, the Contemporary program now applies to:

  • Bronx Local community Districts 1 by 9
  • Brooklyn Community Districts 1 by means of 5, 8, 9, 12, 13, 16, 17
  • Manhattan
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