What’s Really Killing Us? Asks Alexandra Drane

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What’s really killing us? Is it heart disease, cancer, diabetes, Alzheimer’s. Not quite says Alexandra Drane.

“Life Sucks Disease”

She knows of another killer…one she calls “Life Sucks Disease.”

Drane, founder of the Eliza Corporation, shook up the health care conversation at NCQA’s Quality Talks by talking about what’s really killing us. Drane says we need to address what is sucking the life out of most of us…financial stress, workplace stress, relationship stress, caregiver stress. She says all of these can cause actual health issues or worsen the ones you’ve got.

While the health care industry is trying to get people to understand the basics of prevention, screenings, diet and exercise as the keys to good health, Drane says that message is lost among those who have other real-life concerns.  People with stresses in their life are more likely to suffer from exhaustion, alcohol or drug abuse, isolation and depression.

When life goes wrong, health goes wrong.

What's Really Killing Us?
What’s Really Killing Us? Click here to find out!

While the health care industry is trying to get us to understand the basics of prevention, screenings, diet and exercise as keys to good health, Drane says that message is lost among those who have real-life issues. People under stress are more likely to suffer from exhaustion, alcohol or drug abuse, isolation and depression.

The issues that impact people’s lives and health don’t get the same recognition as medical and other factors. “Life is a day-to-day challenge,” Drane says. The health care industry is trying hard, but is not really listening to patients. Providers need to go a step farther and not only ask patients how they are feeling, but how they are doing. Ask if there are situations that could be affecting their health, and how they deal with them. And then offer to help.

Watch her Quality Talk and see why she believes Life Sucks Disease deserves a seat at the adult table.

Cindy Peña
Cindy is Senior Communications Manager at NCQA. Her focus is building consumer awareness through media and public relations. A communications and public engagement strategist with a background steeped in TV news reporting, Cindy is also part of NCQA’s Creative Services unit developing messaging through visual storytelling.

3 thoughts on “What’s Really Killing Us? Asks Alexandra Drane

  1. I agree that providers should go a step further to find out how to help the patient. I also believe that patients are very concerned about their insurance as it relates to their health, finances and general welfare. It is important to know exactly what your responsibility will be after insurance pays. Most people want to have financial freedom and a better quality of life but life is imposed on them with mask. Mask and deception of reality is true in this life. We first have to stop the bleeding by stitching up the wound and letting it heal instead of putting a band aid on it without any antibiotic.

  2. Thank You Alexandra Drane! It is such a relief to see this issue finally being brought to the forefront of public health. I worked as a public health specialist for over fifteen years, was getting my MPH, and had worked my way up to program manager. Then, my parents became ill and in 2011, I lost them both. I also happened to be going through a divorce at that time, and dealing with a rebelling teenager. Quickly things in life went from alright to not so good, then from bad to worse. My physical and mental health followed the same path. I would like to say everything cleared up after the stress decreased, but my body didn’t work that way. I still suffer from both physical and mental health issues that may or may not improve. More people need to recognize this and employers need to address this issue from the start.

  3. You’re talking at the choir when you speak to us in “real” Family Medicine. That’s what we do!! At least were trained to do, & used to try to do.
    But we’re Dinosaurs, rapidly becoming extinct. Lost because of “capitation” & EMRization, checklists & “documentation” which I call de-capitation, widgetization & bureau-tization — the concepts of “don’t see ’em ‘cuz we’re paid anyway”, have scribes & anyone to do the busywork & get the almighty chart to cover the page (often full of errors & canned write-ups), never mind really getting to know the patient………… Can’t take care of people that way
    Sorry. Just the truth.
    Pepi Granat MD (Dinosaur FamDoc)

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