Veteran correspondent for The Washington Post, T.R. Reid has written an interesting new book on healthcare, The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care. In the book Reid goes, suffering with his frozen shoulder, to 10 different countries to seek treatment. The journey seems to be a great comparison of the world’s healthcare systems and perspectives. Read the New York Times review or, even better, listen to his interview on Fresh Air. Reid was also on KQED’s Forum as well.
Category : Health
There’s growing evidence that going to a 4-day, 40-hour workweek has great benefits for workers and the environment. For the past year, more than 17,000 state employees in Utah have shifted to a Monday to Thursday schedule.
For those workplaces, there’s no longer a need to turn on the lights, elevators or computers on Fridays—nor do janitors need to clean vacant buildings. Electric bills have dropped even further during the summer, thanks to less air-conditioning: Friday’s midday hours have been replaced by cooler mornings and evenings on Monday through Thursday. As of May, the state had saved $1.8 million.
With less people commuting on Friday, the state estimates the new hours have reduced air pollution by an estimated 12,000 metric tons of CO2. And after surveying workers over the past year, there were other surprising findings: 30 percent surveyed said they exercised more, took fewer sickdays, and increased volunteerism.
Here’s a business plan for you: A billion customers in the world, entrepreneur and philanthropist Dr. Paul Polakis was quoted in this New York Times article as saying, are waiting for a $2 pair of eyeglasses, a $10 solar lantern and a $100 house. Take a look at the great, cheap ideas at the Cooper Hewitt show, Design for the other 90%.
KickStart is a non-profit organization that develops and markets new technologies for small-scale entrepreneurs in East Africa that are durable, easy to operate and cost under $1,000. They develop things like micro-irrigation, cooking oil and building technologies that make an impact: 41,000 new businesses started, 800 new businesses per month, $41 million a year in new profits and wages generated by the new businesses.