Healthcare learning to market to modern consumers

Regardless of what industry one is talking about, there are always marketing tactics in place that cater to the consumers. The core, the very nature of every industry lies in the concept of catering to a specific kind of consumer. Healthcare has historically been one of the most difficult industries to market successfully and effectively, because it is to integral and widespread that consumers often take it for granted. We are so used to having so much choice, and as a direct result most of us tend to spend little time focusing on the finer details and simply choosing what seems at first glance to be the most convenient.

The irony rings true; for big healthcare decisions, we tend to put little effort into them, and for other, smaller-scale decisions (such as choosing natural health supplements like Plant Therapy) tend to grasp more effort from us. This is not a bad thing – we should always be concerned with how we treat our bodies – but we need to be paying closer attention to all aspects and outlets that relate to our health. It is for this reason that the need for well thought out marketing in healthcare is so important.

Historically slow to adapt to most technological advancements and developments, the healthcare industry is finally coming to terms with the new reality: the world is shifting towards a tech-driven future, and so all marketing efforts must adhere to the same tech-driven methods and models if they have any hope of being effective in the long term. There is nothing particularly exciting about healthcare…unlike hospitality or retail, there is no material or immediately recognisable benefits in most cases, and this tends to turn people off. Marketing healthcare in a way that modern consumers respond to is the easiest and most effective way to kick consumer awareness and attention into high gear.

Rather than traditional door to door marketing or print marketing (one of the most popular marketing techniques historically used by the healthcare industry), the healthcare industry has come to realise that today’s consumers respond best to tech-enabled marketing. Starting with video marketing, the healthcare industry first gained consumer attention in mass effect by running ads on television during ad breaks and on the internet (think YouTube ads). When these kinds of marketing strategies gained more traction, they rolled out email marketing (the modern version of print marketing), all the while gaining more and more attention with each passing marketing strategy.

We are now amid the latest modern marketing tactic in healthcare: social media marketing. Healthcare services around the world are raising awareness for not only the causes they function to help find solutions for, but the institutions themselves. With most of the developed world (and even beyond) having a smartphone in their hands, we spend more time browsing online than we typically do using other devices (such as laptops, desktops, or tablets), so healthcare taking advantage of social media and using it to market their sector is a stroke of brilliance.

A popular marketing strategy across industries today, social media marketing makes its mark on a sole principle: letting visuals tell the story. People are driven to watch their advertisements rather than read large blocks of test about them these days, and so social media marketing is the epitome of this marketing ideal in brilliant, constant motion.

Why entrepreneurs believe in investing in a different form of education

Education has become a topic for discussion in recent years. People are realizing that traditional education does not provide children and adults with the important lessons required in life and especially in business. Many believe that traditional education even limited children’s capabilities and creativity until recent years, which however, has gradually changed. When it comes to higher education, more influencers and business owners are coming forward and speaking of their concerns. Many believe that there are better options than traditional education which provide more knowledge to individuals. A lot of business owners believe that there are many ways in which an individual can invest in oneself. For example, focus on their strengths and weaknesses, mental health, and overall wellness are of more importance to influential people. It is believed that investing in life coaching and other therapy, which is now even available online through platforms like Naya Clinics, help individuals understand their passion. Entrepreneurs focus on many other forms of investment as well and believe in the new form of education in contrast to traditional education.

It is important to take into understanding that these influencers and business owners are not against education, but more so believe that education can be better. There is potential in traditional education that can create better leaders of tomorrow. Entrepreneurs believe that education and knowledge is gained lifelong; one should be willing to learn in order to grow. Moreover, it has been noted that higher education is not an important element of becoming an entrepreneur. Therefore, there are other investments one can make to grow as an entrepreneur, which are all inclusive of learning. The reason most entrepreneurs and business owners speak of the inability of schools children’s abilities is that of schools focus on marks and grades. A lot of entrepreneurs have spoken about their bad grades and how it did not influence their success. Entrepreneurs understand that learning can happen through travel, people, and experiences. It can also be done through books that are more affordable than higher education and contain centuries worth of knowledge. In the current world where online education is being emphasized, many business owners believe that all which is necessary can be learned online. Courses of vast variety are available both for free and with payments, these courses are constantly emphasized by business owners as they are based on highly specific topics. Entrepreneurs also state the importance of investing in oneself through coaches and mentors. Most of what is being done has been done before; therefore, it is necessary to learn through those who have already achieved success in order to gain further knowledge about success.

Investment is different for each individual, a nurse would have to invest in the degree that allows one to become a nurse. Therefore, mostly entrepreneurs speak only for those individuals who want to pursue entrepreneurship. A lot of areas of entrepreneurship cannot be taught in business schools. Because as Warren Buffett said, “I don’t think college is for everyone.” It is important to lucidly state that all entrepreneurs and business owners believe in learning and acquiring knowledge, yet not all think that it can be done through the method of traditional school. It is important to always learn yet not always is it important to have a degree.

Oklahoma Becomes 30th US Medical Marijuana State Passing the Most Progressive MMJ Laws in the Country

On Tuesday, June 25, Oklahoma became the 30th state in the US to legalize medical marijuana. Where Oklahoma and Nebraska were suing Colorado just four years ago, now Oklahoma voters have approved the most progressive medical marijuana laws in the country. The initiative, known as Question 788, will allow medical marijuana to be prescribed for any conditions doctors deem appropriate.

What Will Medical Marijuana Look Like in Oklahoma?

Each medical marijuana state in the country has its own specific list of qualifying medical conditions. The most common conditions cannabinoids are prescribed throughout the country include: cancer, epilepsy and seizures, chronic pain, nausea, multiple sclerosis, HIV/AIDS, and PTSD. Some states permit more conditions than others, while some are extremely selective. Texas, for example, has only approved medical marijuana for one condition: intractable epilepsy.

Oklahoma, however, is doing things a little bit different. Doctors in Oklahoma will be able to recommend medical cannabis for any condition. Oklahomans for Health is the cannabis advocacy group responsible for the initiative, and chairman Chip Paul says its passing is an undeniable victory for patients across the state.

“With the passage of SQ788,” says Paul, “Oklahomans have passed perhaps the most unique medical marijuana law in the nation.  With no qualifying conditions, the law will put accountability squarely in the hands of physicians and under the same state regulatory controls as prescription medications.  We are pleased that Oklahomans have seen our vision and have adopted the state question into law.”

Passed with a 57 percent approval, Question 788 will allow medical marijuana patients in Oklahoma to possess eight ounces of medical marijuana at home and three ounces of medical marijuana in public, two ounces more than Colorado’s legal limit. Oklahoma MMJ patients will also be permitted to grow up to 12 plants. Another part of the bill will reduce penalties for possession of up to 1.5 ounces of marijuana for any person with a medical condition, regardless if they have a medical license or not.

Oklahoma Has Been Long-Known for Some of the Strictest Cannabis Laws in the Country

Recreational weed laws in Oklahoma have long been considered some of the harshest in the country, where possession of any amount of herb can get you up to a year and jail and cost you $1,000. There are horror stories of people who have received extremely strict sentences for weed in Oklahoma.

Rheumatoid arthritis patient Will Foster was sentenced to 93 years in prison for cannabis cultivation, which was later reduced to 20 years. After parole, Foster relocated to California and became a licensed medical marijuana patient. Soon after, Oklahoma extradited Foster back and sentenced him to addition time in prison.

Then there is the infamous case of Patricia Spottedcow, the 25-year-old mother of four who was sentenced to 12 years in prison for selling less than $40 worth of cannabis to an undercover cop. Or that of paraplegic Jimmy Montgomery, who received life in prison when two ounces of weed was discovered in his wheelchair. While his sentence was later reduced to 10 years, he lost a leg due to medical complications while he was in prison.

It’s no surprise that several are shocked that Oklahoma has just passed what many are calling the most progressive medical marijuana laws in the country. The passing of Question 788 represents a major shift in the changing tide of medical marijuana laws in the country.

Application information will be accessible to patients by July 26, and applications will begin to be accepted by August 25.

How the obesity epidemic is a problem for even normal-weight people

The most worrying healthcare challenge facing governments today is that many adults and children are struggling with being overweight and obese. According to the National Center for Health Statistics in USA, two in three adults in the US are now overweight and one in three is obese. These rates are even higher among ethnic minorities, rural populations, and those with low income or education. While health experts are worrying about the physical and psychological effects of the problem, the economists are worried about the long-term effects of the problem on the American economy.

According to experts, the treatment of obesity and obesity-related conditions has both direct and indirect costs amounting to billions of dollars a year. Health services, surgery, lab tests, and drug therapy constitute direct costs for treatment of obesity. On the other hand, indirect costs are difficult to be calculated as they are based on resources forgone because of obesity, such as days of lost work, presenteeism (work below full capacity) and higher insurance costs borne by employers. It has been estimated that obesity will cost Americans anywhere between USD 390 billion and USD 520 billion every year by 2030 in lost economic productivity. While clinically studied weight management programs like Weight Watchers and Nutrisystem offer viable weight loss solutions, obesity rates aren’t getting better.

The problems are not restricted to the health and service sector alone. According to the National Bureau of Economic Research (NEBR), navy recruits who were overweight were more prone to fail semi-annual physical readiness tests as compared to their peers in normal weight range. It has become increasingly difficult for recruiting authorities to find men and women who meet the fitness requirements to join the defence forces.

The NEBR also estimated that overweight and obese military personnel on active duty cost the taxpayer as much as USD 105 million a year in lost productivity, and about USD 1 billion every year in treatments for weight loss and health problems related to obesity. Health expert Bea of Bestiews says that these treatment costs are higher than those for treatment for tobacco and alcohol-related illness combined.

The epidemic also makes the American transportation system more expensive. In a study conducted by researchers at the University of Illinois, transporting obese and overweight passengers ends up in consumption of extra one billion gallons of gasoline in the US. It was also calculated in a separate study that American airlines bought 350 million more gallons of jet fuel because their passengers got heavier.

The healthcare spending in the US is only going to increase because of weight-related ailments in times to come unless there is a conscious effort among legislators, parents, policy advisors, healthcare experts and schools to prevent it. District authorities must provide access to safe sidewalks, streets and parks for walking and playing for both adults and children. There should be greater spending on research for obesity prevention.

Also, healthcare authorities must introduce better nutrition education for low-income families, pregnant and lactating women, and children up to the age of 5 who are found to be at nutritional risk. Schools should make exercise classes compulsory in the curriculum for students along with banning junk foods and sugared drinks from being sold in the school cafeteria. With all these measures and greater awareness, there is a very good chance that the obesity epidemic figures will come down in years to come.

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Top 5 dieting mistakes you might be committing right now

Your food choices decide how you are going to feel today and tomorrow. With more and more studies indicating a link between excess weight and risk of chronic diseases, there has been an increase in efforts among people to improve fitness. Healthy eating and exercise are the first steps to developing a healthy lifestyle and improving overall fitness.

Even with so much information available on the internet and popular media, the biggest challenge to healthy eating remains lack of information. Many people opt for a diet programme without evaluating their own dietary needs. In many cases, such random plans only lead to more health issues, including malnutrition. Therefore, in this article, we list top five mistakes that people make while choosing to follow a diet plan.

Not consulting an expert

Truth is, diet and nutrition is a separate field of study and even doctors are not adequately trained to give advice on this subject. If you are really planning to eat healthy, consult a well-trained and experienced dietician who can understand your lifestyle, dietary needs and budget to design a suitable diet plan. What works for one person will not work for another. It may be an extra expenditure, but it will be an investment for a lifetime.

Crash dieting

Diet expert Jonathan Drissel of Fitij.com says that the concept of dieting is about being able to nourish your body as per its requirements in a sustainable way. With crash dieting, one may shed a bit of weight quickly, but experts warn that this diet does more damage to the body in the long run. Along with fat, crash diets also takeaway precious lean muscle and tissues, thereby slowing down the metabolic rate. When the metabolism slows down, the body puts on weight more easily than ever. That defeats the true purpose of dieting, isn’t it? Nutritionists advice that you opt for eating habits that you can sustain for a lifetime. You will lose fat without starving yourself and that fat will go away for good.

Weighing scale fixation

A weighing scale only indicates change in weight and is not a true indicator of fitness. Among women, fluctuations in hormones can cause greater water retention, which will reflect on the scale as extra weight, but it does not mean that they are unfit. Also, if you have been working out properly, you probably are putting on good muscle weight. The scale doesn’t know the difference between good and bad fat, so extra weight doesn’t mean extra fat all the time.

Avoiding fat completely

However contradictory it may sound; the truth is that you need fats for tissue repair, transportation of vitamins and energy production. Include eggs, avocado, nuts and olive oil in your diet to burn more fat, feel good about yourself and staying healthy. Low and no-fat diets contain thickeners and sugars that will make you obese.

Not snacking

Between meals, eating healthy snacks like fruits and nuts provide required nutrition to the body and keep hunger pangs away. Remember, dieting is not about starvation. It is about eating right at the correct time.

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