Some people think it is more important to spend public money on promoting healthy lifestyle in order to prevent illness than to spend it on the treatment for people who are already ill. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
Of course it goes without saying that prevention is better than cure. That is why, in recent years, there has been a growing body of opinion in favor of putting more resources into promoting a healthy lifestyle. I agree that by promoting a healthy lifestyle, there will be fewer people requiring treatment and thus the amount spent on curing ill health could be reduced substantially.
As many modern diseases are a consequence of our lifestyles, one way of making savings to the health budget would be to educate people about how to prevent expensive health problems such as diabetes or heart disease. Most medical doctors today do not have the time to (nor are they paid to) teach patients how to make these changes to their lifestyle through diet or exercise. The government can take the help of pervasive media such as TV and radio to educate people.
It is understandable that when people are sick they want the best medical treatment possible, with access to the latest diagnostic equipment, expensive MRI scanners, for example. If the problem is life threatening then we demand complex operations such as open-heart surgery or organ transplants. Such procedures usually require intensive nursing care and lengthy periods of hospitalization, which are costly.
Furthermore, there are many diseases which if diagnosed early through proper screening tests can be treated very easily. For example cancer of the cervix can be diagnosed with a very simple, inexpensive outdoor test called the pap smear. If the government spends a little amount to provide such screening tests free of cast then a lot of money needed for expensive treatments could be saved later on.
In conclusion, I believe that, it would be definitely worthwhile to divert the health budget towards prevention of diseases. By doing so the nation would be healthier and automatically the cost of treatment would be cut down.