Welcome to the New 4H Club

Welcome to the New 4H Club

Some of you might have been a member of your local 4H Club. My wife, who grew up in rural upstate New York, belonged and entered her pet rabbits in the local competition. I grew up in the inner city and wound up in the cooked but not done club.

The foundations of 4-H began in 1902 with the work of several people in different parts of the United States. The focal point of 4-H has been the idea of practical and hands-on learning, which came from the desire to make public school education more connected to rural life. Early programs incorporated both public and private resources. 4-H was founded with the purpose of instructing rural youth in improved farming and farm-homemaking practices. By the 1970s, it was broadening its goals to cover a full range of youth, including minorities, and a wide range of life experience. The official 4-H emblem is a green four-leaf clover with a white H on each leaf standing for HeadHeartHands, and Health.

Over one hundred years later, many are part of the new 4H club - health costshousing costs and unavailability, higher education access, completion and costs and help with child care and transportation issues.

The problem is that real wages effectively declined in 2018, according to figures released this month from the PayScale Index, a formula from the Seattle-based salary comparison site. PayScale said the median wage increases, when adjusted for inflation, were only 1.1% since last year and 1% over the past year. Income inequality doesn't help.

All this matters because social determinants impact disparate health outcomes.

The BIG FIX, changing sick care to healthcare, is a wicked problem and will require rethinking and reconfiguring multiple social systems that impact everyone, not just the middle class.

PG&E is turning off the power to 34 counties in California. Add heating your house as another headache. Also, since you won't be able to work from home on your computer without power ( Half of employees work from home at least one day per week), welcome to the digital divide. Maybe an unintended consequence will be empathy.

Arlen Meyers, MD, MBA is the President and CEO of the Society of Physician Entrepreneurs on Twitter@ArlenMD and Co-editor of Digital Health Entrepreneurship.

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  • William Taylor

    Insightful read

  • Rob Dixon

    Fixing healthcare will take decades

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Arlen Meyers, MD, MBA

Former Contributor

Arlen Meyers, MD, MBA is a professor emeritus of otolaryngology, dentistry, and engineering at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and the Colorado School of Public Health and President and CEO of the Society of Physician Entrepreneurs at www.sopenet.org. He has created several medical device and digital health companies. His primary research centers around biomedical and health innovation and entrepreneurship and life science technology commercialization. He consults for and speaks to companies, governments, colleges and universities around the world who need his expertise and contacts in the areas of bio entrepreneurship, bioscience, healthcare, healthcare IT, medical tourism -- nationally and internationally, new product development, product design, and financing new ventures. He is a former Harvard-Macy fellow and In 2010, he completed a Fulbright at Kings Business, the commercialization office of technology transfer at Kings College in London. He recently published "Building the Case for Biotechnology." "Optical Detection of Cancer", and " The Life Science Innovation Roadmap". He is also an associate editor of the Journal of Commercial Biotechnology and Technology Transfer and Entrepreneurship and Editor-in-Chief of Medscape. In addition, He is a faculty member at the University of Colorado Denver Graduate School where he teaches Biomedical Entrepreneurship and is an iCorps participant, trainer and industry mentor. He is the Chief Medical Officer at www.bridgehealth.com and www.cliexa.com and Chairman of the Board at GlobalMindED at www.globalminded.org, a non-profit at risk student success network. He is honored to be named by Modern Healthcare as one of the 50 Most Influential Physician Executives of 2011 and nominated in 2012 and Best Doctors 2013.

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