Sunday, September 15, 2019

New Book, Trusted Healers, Calls for A Health Care Revolution


Northern Virginia -- Dan Pelino, the author of the just-released book, Trusted Healers:  Dr. Paul Grundy and the Global Healthcare Crusade (Koehler Books, (,is leading the way for a transformation of health care in America. His book addresses the push-button areas that need to be addressed: care cost, access to a medical home, and patient responsibility.

As the fate of healthcare is debated in the United States and abroad, discussions over accessibility, and affordability, dominate. But the author of a breakthrough book shows what is really needed is a trusted healer in a medical home for everyone, for life. The results will yield better care at lower costs and become the gold standard for all of us.

Pelino tirelessly followed Dr. Paul Grundy around the globe for a year, observing a revolution in healthcare before his very eyes. 

Dr. Grundy is heavily featured in Pelino’s book, to bring attention to the work of the man known as the Godfather of the Primary Care Medical Home Movement. Dr. Grundy, with 50 years of experience, served four American presidents and was decorated with numerous awards for his work that extends back to the AIDS epidemic. Until last year, he served for nearly two decades as the chief medical officer and global director of IBM’s healthcare transformation. He’s also the founding president of the Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative.

Trusted Healers details the decade-long movement by Dr. Grundy to transform all healthcare on a national and global scale.

Indeed, this is a story that has not yet been told. In addition to learning about Dr. Grundy, now leading global healthcare transformation for Innovaccer, Inc., which provides breakthrough technologies for better healthcare, we also see interviews with an international cadre of innovative leaders and visionaries in healthcare today, including:

Ø  Ex-Congressman Patrick J. Kennedy, who wrote the Foreword for Trusted Healers.
Ø  Dr. Michael Roizen, Dr. Oz Show co-creator, best-selling author, and chief wellness officer at The Cleveland Clinic Wellness Institute.
Ø  UK Secretary of State Jeremy Hunt, former Secretary of Health and Social Care for six years.
Ø  Glenn D. Steele, MD, Ph.D, CEO (Ret.) of Geisinger Health System, named one of the 50 most powerful physician executives in healthcare.
Ø  Professor James Kingsland, OBE, one of the top physician leaders in the United Kingdom, Great Britain’s long standing BBC Radio doctor.
Ø  Nwando Olayiwola, MD, MPH, clinical transformation officer for Rubicon MD, improving access to care for underserved patients.
Ø  Nick Donofrio, executive vice-president (Ret.) of Innovation and Technology at IBM, who led the world in technology innovations for forty years, is one of the world’s top corporate leaders.
Ø  David Folk, CEO and Co-Founder of NEXT Integrative Minds Life Sciences, Inc.

“Personalized, precision medicine and care is what’s needed to heal our ineffective system,” says Pelino.

Who should have access to healthcare, what that healthcare should look like, and how you can assure your family has the best healthcare is what Trusted Healers is all about.

Dr. Grundy has been relentlessly leading the movement that now puts the U.S. at the precipice of a tipping point. Over 48% of all U.S. primary care doctors are now practicing in a medical home environment.

“If America fails to create something strong in the long term, we will always see a short-term fix approach to things,” says Pelino.

“We need a transformation – not patchwork attempts to stop the bleeding. The medical home model of care will solve a crisis in cost, quality, and physician morale,” concludes Pelino, “all over the world.”

Here’s an interview with Mr. Pelino, who is a client of the public relations firm that I work for:

1.      Trusted Healers shows what the state of healthcare is in the world today. You believe it can and should be a whole lot better. Why? Throughout the world, in developing nations, societies are making strides in healthcare access and the quality of care for all citizens. We have entered the “Age of Healthcare Intelligence” and the dramatic changes this will create in the coming years should be available for all people. We know in America that our healthcare system is challenged. But it is a cultural decision holding us back. We have all the tools we need to solve the problems that we face and as we look at the process for societal change, we see a path to better care for all. Trusted Healers is a book of hope, aspiration, and encouragement.

2.      Why do you feel that once people read your book they will never look at healthcare the same way? Trusted Healers offers a view of healthcare from the inside. We embark upon a journey with a front row seat to societal change, to new principles of cultural leadership and to a new threshold in healthcare. When you read Trusted Healers, you will go on a journey of discovery to view healthcare from the inside. You will meet trusted healers, healthcare leaders in the US and abroad who are guiding change addressing the difficult questions and providing an aspiration to better care and quality of life.  There are secrets along this journey. Secrets of how cultures make change happen.  You will learn that evidence-based medicine is better healthcare and that it should be offered in your community. You will learn about new findings in access, wellness, and empowerment.  There are secrets of effective inspired leadership. You will learn about the Trusted Healers of the world. And you will realize there is one major decision you need to make right now that will impact your entire life.

3.      How do other nations compare to the US when it comes to delivering quality, accessible healthcare. One of our take-away observations about healthcare in other developed nations is that the most satisfied and content citizens reside in nations that have accepted the belief that Everyone Matters. Every other developed nation in the world has structured healthcare to not leave anyone out. Include everyone. That’s where they begin their planning. Their costs are much less than the cost structure of healthcare systems in the US. And their citizens are happier not only with their healthcare, but happier people. Rightfully so, many contend that the population of these countries are much smaller than the US (330 million).

4.      What are some of the changes you would like to see in the delivery and access to American healthcare? Everyone should have a Trusted Healer and a medical home to guide them through life, accessible any time needed. Let’s ask the question, what happens if we provide robust primary care to everyone? The entire continuum of care we have created in America should be available to everyone. Studies have shown how this will actually cost less than providing the episodic care of over-reliance on hospitals, urgent care centers, and Emergency Departments for routine matters. Focus on the patient team-care models that help us all get in front of disease and emergency visits and address mental and behavioral health for less money seem to be the question worth pursuing.

5.      Why do you believe reducing the age to Medicare to 55 years makes sense – but not have Medicare for all? We believe transformation guided by the creation of robust primary care, available to everyone, is a solid starting point. Dr. Ted Epperly, in a interview in Trusted Healers, makes a great point. He advocates dropping the eligibility for Medicare to age 50 because the 15 years prior to age 65 are when people usually encounter chronic disease and they face grave danger if they try to wait until they are better insured with Medicare. Or worse, they forego being treated.  Our culture needs to make some core decisions about healthcare. “Medicare for All” is one option under scrutiny.

      On July 30, 1965, President Johnson signed Medicare and Medicaid into law. (The Social Security Amendments of 1965, Pub.L. 89–97, 79 Stat. 286, enacted July 30, 1965, was legislation in the United States whose most important provisions resulted in creation of two programs: Medicare and Medicaid. Trusted Healers notes that societal change can take decades, 40 years on average, for a cultural breakthrough to reach a point where it becomes “what we do” and we decide to continue to build upon it, sustaining the rhythm of change.  So now, after these decades of making Medicare and Medicaid a part of our societal structure, we are beginning to accept this system as worthy, and we are weighing options for building upon the current system as opposed to rip and replace.

6.      Your book highlights the accomplishments of a number of leaders in healthcare, particularly Dr. Paul Grundy. Can you tell us of his accomplishments and what he is leading the way for? No one physician throughout this century has done more to promote patient-centered healthcare than Dr. Paul Grundy. I had the honor of serving with Dr. Grundy at IBM as we tackled the crisis in healthcare around the world. Paul is a brilliant doctor and he spent his life as a diplomat, a doctor, son of missionaries in Sierra Leone, with Nelson Mandela in South Africa fighting HIV/AIDS, and with IBM as Director of Global Healthcare Transformation.  Trusted Healers is his mantra and he has devoted his life to helping nations reorganize their primary care into the medical home, making possible a Trusted Healer for all citizens. He is perhaps the most decorated physician and certainly one of the most fascinating leaders I have ever met. His story is worth sharing, reading, and admiring.

7.      You value and champion what you call a “trusted healer,” a caregiver who invests time in getting to know you and helps you make good healthcare decisions as you go through life. So what would that look like? When we build our healthcare around this bedrock, we all will be empowered rather than subjugated. The rails for this journey of healthcare liberation are already laid. We have some predictions in Trusted Healers. We will take you on a tour of the continuum of care where the medical system is a tool of the individual; you one day will have the entire continuum of care under your influence and have guidance available at the time of need, all in collaboration with your Trusted Healer.  For me, the concept of personal healthcare seemed so simple on its face, but it is so antithetical to how modern medicine has evolved. Paul Grundy’s inspiration is very much an approach with a modern world application of what we know impacts the quality of life.   Paul’s aspiration, his vision, calls for every citizen to have a medical home, a delivery model that ensures that we receive the necessary care when and where we need it, in a manner we can understand, by a Trusted Healer and care team that invests the time in getting to know us, standing by us over the years—physically, virtually, emotionally, and spiritually.  When we build our healthcare around this bedrock, we all will be empowered rather than subjugated. The rails for this journey of healthcare liberation are already laid.

8.      Former Congressman Patrick J. Kennedy, in the book’s foreword, demands our nation consciously change the way it cares for mental health issues, the opioid crisis, and the stigma we attach to disease of the brain. What do you propose be done in these areas? Well, like every other form of healthcare, we should begin by agreeing to make care available to all citizens. That is not hard to do. Then, within that wonderful inclusive idea, we make sure that mental health care is offered exactly like other aspects of care. Individually, we stop stigmatizing mental health care and diseases of the brain. Just stop it. The brain is an organ like the heart or the lungs and when things go wrong we should not shun talking about it.

9.      You note, in your interviews for the book with Michael Roizen, MD, an award-winning author, chief wellness officer of the Cleveland Clinic, and co-creator of the Dr. Oz Show television program, that a key part to healthcare and wellness comes with prevention and patient responsibility. What can be done to help people help themselves? A culture needs powerful leaders to listen and who fall in love with the questions, making complex issues understandable. Dr. Roizen is our champion for that. The brilliance of Dr. Roizen is that he understands that there needs to be an incentive to change behavior that is coupled with a wellness focus. He created a system that offers thousands of dollars in discounts for healthcare plans to the employees of the Cleveland Clinic. The rewards are deeper than just benefiting from exercising, proper diet, and caring for your health. The results of combining incentives and wellness are meaningful. Dr. Roizen has very high participation in wellness programs when the incentives are added to the equation.

       A colleague, David Folk, founder of NEXT Integrative Life Sciences is deeply involved in this very subject and watch for major developments in the field of personal responsibility for your own well-being.  The secret to changing a culture is revealed in Trusted Healers. All change is local. A culture will change at its own pace. A culture needs powerful leaders to listen and who fall in love with the questions, making complex issues understandable. Dr. Roizen is our champion for that.
       And Dr. Roizen has revealed another secret. You can help millions of people if you have a platform from which to cheer them on. Thus, The Dr. Oz Show and fifteen books translated into three dozen languages around the world. He is a world leader in wellness. Trusted Healers shows what the state of healthcare is in the world today. We believe it can and should be a whole lot better.

10.  You advocate for the creation of a medical home. What exactly is that and why is it vital to healthcare? The relationship with your healer is intimate. Your healer serves your interests – not an insurance company or hospital. Your doctor’s team success is yours as well. It can be easily proven that better medical decisions result from such a powerful relationship. Under Paul’s vision, Your Trusted Healer is part of a team in a 21st century model of primary care called the medical home. The medical home is formed as a clinical team and they know all about you. Your medical home is available when you need it. Your medical home team helps you make good medical decisions and creates a medical partnership based on your needs and how you want to lead your life. Your medical home addresses the full spectrum of healthcare with you – primary care, mental health, and prevention.

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Brian Feinblum’s insightful views, provocative opinions, and interesting ideas expressed in this terrific blog are his alone and not that of his employer or anyone else. You can – and should -- follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at He feels much more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2019. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. Also named by as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America.

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