Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs G?ran H?glund and Prince Daniel of Sweden during a coffee break at the seminar at the House of Sweden on Tuesday morning.
“PROVIDERS PARTNERING with Patients” was the topic of a Tuesday morning, October 25, seminar that drew a big audience to the House of Sweden in Washington, D.C. Present were Prince Daniel of Sweden – his first official visit to the United States – as well as the Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs G?ran H?glund. After welcoming remarks by Swedish Ambassador Jonas Hafstr?m and an introduction by moderator Dr. Michael McGinnis, Senior Scholar and Executive Director at the Institute of Medicine, both Prince Daniel and G?ran H?glund addressed the seminar, talking about the importance of solving the many issues surrounding health care.
THE SEMINAR ADDRESSED disease prevention, leading a healthy lifestyle, and the role of health care providers. New initiatives and strategies in both Sweden and the United States we also presented. Unhealthy lifestyles such as tobacco-, alcohol- and drug use, unhealthy eating and lack of exercise were discussed extensively by the panel.
SWEDISH MINISTER for Health and Social Affairs G?ran H?glund talked about the need for comprehensive strategies and placing more responsibility on health care consumers. He also stated that people need access to the right information through electronic records and digital technology, and emphasized the importance of prevention in health care systems.
DR. ANAND K. PAREKH, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Health, Science and Medicine, HHS, said that prevention makes up less than five percent of all health care spending. Yet he said, there is extensive criticism in the United States that government involvement in health care creates a “nanny-state.” He also noted some economists’ claims that “prevention doesn’t save money” and is a “soft science,” while the financial pressures on physicians’ practices leave them with little time to discuss prevention with their patients. He emphasized the need for a fundamental cultural shift in the U.S. – “to make it easy for individuals to be healthy.”
DR. LARS WEINEHALL, Professor at Ume?University in Sweden, added that 20 percent of the burden of disease is because of unhealthy lifestyles, and that 50 percent of women and 65 percent of men have at least one unhealthy lifestyle habit.
Prince Daniel of Sweden (to the right) arrives at the House of Sweden. To the left Swedish Ambassador to the United States Jonas Hafstr?m.
OTHER SPEAKERS included Dr. Virginia Moyer, Chair, U.S. Preventive Services Task Force; Dr. Anders Tegnell, Head of Department, Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen); Dr. David Meyers, Director, AHRQ’s Center for Primary Care, Prevention, and Clinical Partnerships; Dr. Lars-Erik Holm, Director General, Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare; and Dr. Chesley Richards, Director, CDC’s Office of Prevention Through Healthcare and Office of the Associate Director for Policy
Prince Daniel and G?ran H?glund in conversations during a break.
THE SEMINAR was arranged by the Embassy of Sweden, the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare (Socialstyrelsen), in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services.
Swedish Minister for Health and Social Affairs G?ran H?glund in discussions during a break.