This week, Chelsea and I are in the Coachella Valley, California for our fourth annual Health Matters Annual Activation Summit and the Humana Challenge golf tournament. These and other events this week will provide us with the opportunity to celebrate our partners in health and wellness, and raise awareness of the critically important work being done year-round.
When we started these efforts a few years ago, we didn’t know how far we’d be able to go, but we knew that there was an urgent need to help address the growing health challenges of our country. The United States has among the highest health care costs of any country at our income level, yet we consistently rank between 25th and 33rd among all nations in our health outcomes; chronic diseases cause more deaths than anything else; and this generation is on course to become the first generation of Americans to live shorter lives than their parents. If unchecked, these realities are only going to get worse.
In order to reverse these alarming trends and save and improve countless lives, we need to work with stakeholders from across sectors to eliminate health disparities. That means ensuring that every person—regardless of his or her age, gender, income, or location—has equal access to the opportunities and care they need to be healthy. And our vast strategic partnerships are helping to do just that. At last year’s Health Matters Summit, 30 new strategic partnerships were announced, totaling $200 million in investments, which will touch 75 million people across the United States. And this year, we’ll be doing even more to build on this remarkable initial progress.
I hope you’ll watch our Health Matters Summit live on Monday, January 26, and join our ongoing discussions on social media. We all have a role in improving our individual and collective health; so let’s continue to work together and build a healthier tomorrow.