How Your Investment Dollars Can Make an Impact Toward Better Health
If you care about better health and well-being, this means you invest in companies that are working to improve health care access for everyone.
Every year, new medical breakthroughs show the promise and potential to improve health and well-being around the globe. In 2018 alone, for example, researchers at Stanford moved closer to developing a “cancer vaccine” treatment that attacks tumors, and scientists at the Cleveland Clinic used a new deep-brain stimulation technique that shows promising results in helping stroke patients recover.
While these developments are exciting, the current landscape also shows unique challenges when it comes to health care access and quality of services. In fact, the quality of the health care you receive can vary widely depending on where you live and your personal demographics.
For example, according to the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, many Southern and Southwestern states had low overall health care quality scores compared to those in the Northeast and Midwest. Even more sobering, when quality of care for Whites was compared to Blacks, Hispanics, and Asians, the disparities widened. Even if a state ranked high for health care quality overall, the data also showed not all its citizens receive optimal treatment.
So, when it comes to health and well-being, we simultaneously have more potential to live longer, healthier lives than ever before, and major gaps in terms of who can access even basic health care services.
And it’s not just a nationwide issue. Better health, in fact, has become a priority across the globe. When the United Nations established its 17 Sustainable Development Goals back in 2015, it included Good Health and Well-Being as Global Goal #3, which works to ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for everyone by 2030.
In short, when it comes to health and well-being, the current state of affairs is primed for significant disruption aimed toward creative solutions. This is where conscious investing can make a difference.
How Can My Investment Dollars Support Better Health?
When you choose to invest with impact, you’re consciously deciding to put your money toward the causes you care about. If you care about better health and well-being, this means you invest in companies that are working to improve health care access for everyone. These same companies may also be making breakthroughs in diseases or conditions that are meaningful to you, such as a biotech company researching new cures for leukemia or a corporation addressing rare conditions like CRPS. Alternatively, investing with impact could target companies supporting community health screening programs for disease prevention or free or low-cost vaccinations reaching underserved populations.
Consider your investment dollars as a way to send an important message to the company and its leadership. Your investments say that you support their efforts in the areas of better health and well-being and you want them to succeed. Additionally, your investments then encourage future activity that furthers the cause. Simply put, your investments tell the company to keep up the good work.
Which Companies are Committed to Better Health?
Many companies, particularly those in the health care industry, are making strides to promote health and wellness for all. Take a look:
- Abbvie: Working with partners on patient-assistance programs, the global biopharmaceutical company provided free medicine to nearly 77,000 patients across the United States. Additionally, they invested $4.8 billion in 2017 to support research and development in innovative medicines in the fields of immunology, neuroscience, oncology, and virology.
- Boston Scientific: Boston Scientific is a medical device manufacturer. Through its Close the Gap health equity program, the company provided community education on cardiovascular care to underserved populations. Additionally, Boston Scientific’s annual Week of Caring encourages employees to take part in worldwide volunteer projects working to improve health and healthy lifestyles in their own communities.
- CVS: In 2017, the pharmacy giant pledged to support the UN Sustainable Development Goals, with a special focus on Good Health and Well-Being. That year alone, through its Project Health Initiative, CVS delivered free health screenings valued at more than $6.4 million, and also donated more than $100 million toward initiatives that improve health in communities around the country.
How Can I Get Started Investing in Better Health?
If you’re curious as to how your investments could support good health and well-being, check out the COIN Better Health Impact Area, which covers companies working to improve health and promote well-being for everyone, across the globe. Your investments could go toward companies working on moonshot developments, like cures for cancer, or smaller breakthroughs, like community nutrition programs. Whether helping an individual to lead a healthier life or promoting wellness practices across a wider population, your investments have the power to make a real difference.