Top 5 Health Challenges of This Century — Are We Prepared for Them?

Playpal
Playpal
Oct 11 · 4 min read

The health industry has continued to make advancements right from the start of this century. From finding cures for different cancers to developing non-invasive medical technology, there is always something new emerging in the health front. But as move forward in time, our resources and supplies become more and more scarce, especially seeing how the global population and poverty levels are rising at alarming rates. Let’s take a look at some of the key health challenges that we are currently facing — and expect to face — in the near future.

1) Antibiotic Resistances

Antibiotic resistance is becoming a pressing issue in public health and is on the verge of becoming a rundown of a global crisis. Antibiotic resistance occurs when a bacteria successfully retaliates against a drug that was designed to kill it. The healthcare industry is trying to resolve this issue by limiting the use of antibiotics to only when deemed necessary and critical, and by shifting the focus toward preventative (versus reactive) care. But, we still have a long way to go on this front.

2) Immunization

Pneumonia and influenza still continue to be the top 10 causes of deaths among children and older adults. Unfortunately, immunization will be a great challenge that we can expect to face; with poor access to basic healthcare facilities, people in most parts of the world cannot avail the most basic vaccines, putting them at a higher risk for developing life-threatening diseases. To make things worse, today’s polarized views on vaccinations has made it even more difficult to educate the public on the necessity of immunizations and the gross impacts that boycotting them can have on society at large.

3) Obesity

Being overweight increases one’s chance of getting multiple diseases (such as hypertension, diabetes, heart disease, respiratory problems and various cancers) — so one can only image the connotations of being clinically obese. Not only does a condition like obesity deteriorate ones quality of life, but it also affects one’s mental health. The obesity epidemic is a reality that is a topic of discussion everywhere: from the WHO & United Way to Aetna & Underarmour, obesity is a condition that organizations, governments, and educational institutions alike are hoping to tackle.

4) Mental Health

With today’s increased awareness on mental health, psychological well-being has become just as important as the physical wellbeing of an individual. Finally, it is now established that, just how the other organs and muscles of our body need care, so does the brain. Treating the most statistically rampant mental health illnesses, like depression and/or anxiety, will continue to be the major focus when it comes to mental health, especially since depression is one of the major causes of suicide attempts among adults and elderly alike.

5) HIV/ AIDS

Despite today’s advanced research & scientific methods, medical technology, advanced treatments, and cutting edge medicinal drugs, HIV/ AIDS still remains an anomaly for medical sciences. The treatment of HIV/ AIDS is still in its very initial stages and the only solution available today is prevention.

Bottom Line:

While scientists, doctors, entrepreneurs, researchers, and public health leaders continue to crack the code in tackling the above-mentioned health challenges, one issue will seemingly prevail: insufficient access to health-care. In the past, emphasis & pressure to bridge this critical gap was placed on governments; thanks to today’s Knowledge Sharing and Technology era, revolutions in the health-care and medical sectors (such as telemedicine, artificial intelligence, mHealth apps etc.) have removed the disproportionate dependence on the government.

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Playpal

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