Healthy citizens, healthy communities

Make healthy citizens a priority

 Don’t be downhearted; a few actions make a big difference

In my experience healthy citizens are one aspect of community and business development is often overlooked by people involved. The health problems and frustrations to the health professionals. They become reactive, not proactive in smaller towns and village as they become overworked. The solution lies in having the business and non-profit organisations working together. Increasing collaboration can solve both health and social problems as well as business problems experienced by both.

Chronic disease is one of the most significant health problems facing communities, and indeed the world. Building healthy communities is a continuum including physical, mental and social well-being, it is not just about the absence of disease. Participation in social and community life provide benefits critical to an individual’s overall health, well-being and survival.

Yes, there is much stress on businesses and non-profits in our regional, rural and remote communities. The question is, is it healthy people who build healthy businesses, or is it healthy businesses build healthy people? Community leaders should address the health of the citizens as an essential way of helping the community to prosper while meeting aspirations.

Healthy citizens can avoid chronic diseases

In planning and building healthy communities, never ignore health issues. Explore how the various community activities  impact, positively and negatively, on the potential for people to contract chronic diseases such as:

  • Diabetes,
  • Asthma and other respiratory conditions
  • Heart conditions
  • Stroke
  • Lung disease
  • Various Cancers
  • Arthritis and other muscular/skeletal disorders
  • Mental illness, depression and the so-called “lifestyle diseases”.

These health problems plague every community and require care over many years. Yet many can be controlled and even prevented with proper health management programs.

Every regional, rural and remote community can reduce the risks of ill health.

Healthy citizens minimise impact of health issues

The way to lessen the impact of these diseases is to manage a reduction in the risk factors through such things as:

  • Encouraging medical checkups with local health professionals
  • Increasing awareness of health issues
  • Identifying the problems early
  • Improving the environment
  • Improving mental health
  • Stress management
  • Managing the drug problems in the community
  • Reducing alcohol, tobacco and drug dependency
  • Increasing physical activity
  • Improving weight control
  • Lowering blood pressure
  • Being actively involved in the community
  • Relieving boredom and giving people hope
  • Providing emotional support
  • Helping with culture and language problems
  • Providing more recreational ideas and facilities
  • Improving workplace health and safety saves lives.

You can resolve concerns about future difficulties with an ongoing support program and change the conversations in the community.

People should continue to receive regular checkups for their health as it will assist them on their journey to recovery and ultimate success.  Any program should be set up with a belief many problems and concerns can be resolved. By taking corrective action quicker and seeking objectivity and perspective from external facilitators this can be achieved. The cure is always more preferable to the disease.

Many people just take a quick fix and move on, not realising there is much more which could have been done and was available to them. Well, I have seen them return and the costs of the repair next time. There is always a next time, and it has a  far higher cost than maintaining a support program.

Healthy citizens are involved in health programs

What should a support program consist of, for your community and in the businesses? Identify services which will be required.  What can an ongoing support structure achieve?

  • It can provide you with new knowledge and information as it becomes available
  • Monitor the vital parts on a regular basis.
  • It is always better to have an external eye kept on business and health issues
  • Have community members mentored or coached to more magnificent achievement
  • Help you with critical decision making and problem-solving of matters
  • Receive help with complaint resolution
  • The more people learn about themselves, the better they will feel and the faster you will achieve their business aspirations and the aspirations of the community.

Ongoing support will be essential to avoid any slippage back to the old ways caused the problems.  Repairing any psychological damage people may have suffered should be an integral part of any recovery program.

Medication is something we all have to take.  We just cannot avoid taking the lousy medicine if we expect to win.  Everyone seems to pave the road to success with good intentions. It is important to ensure the people have access to a support group.  They tell me I have less risk of getting another bout of cancer than someone who has not had any, which is why I have regular checkups.

If you are relying on our own understanding of health issues, you are putting your self, your business and your community at risk and inviting trouble.

Quotable Quotes

“I know and understand the price you pay for success. Ambition, hard work and an unremitting devotion to achieving your aspirations are great. But, most of all, is it worth the risk to your health and well-being? Peter Sergeant

“Prepare for every game like you just lost your last game”.  Lon Kruger



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