Over the past 50 years, we have lived out of a narrative that with enough investment, we would find cures for cancer, heart disease and other chronic diseases. Yet the real victories, like the reduction in motor vehicle deaths, the decline in lung cancer and the elimination of polio, have largely been due to efforts to prevent disease. Our unwavering belief in biotechnology to solve our health problems fails to recognize that the worldwide epidemic of chronic disease is largely due to the innovative technologies of the past: motor vehicles, guns, tobacco, air pollution, medical errors, unhealthy and heavily processed foods, and toxic chemicals. Technology and drugs are safe; they are apolitical and profitable. But, we won’t solve our health problems with technology alone; we need social reform and regulations to build healthy cities and curb pollutants and hazardous consumer products.
The Little Things Matter Team
Bruce Lanphear, MD, MPH, is a Clinician Scientist at the Child & Family Research Institute, BC Children’s Hospital and Professor in the Faculty of Health Sciences at Simon Fraser University in Vancouver, British Columbia. Over the past decade, he has become increasingly vexed by our inability to control the “pandemic of consumption” – the largely preventable, worldwide epidemic of chronic disease and disability due to toxic chemicals, industrial pollutants and excess consumption. He is leading an effort to produce videos to enhance public understanding of how our health is inextricably linked with the environment and elevate efforts to prevent disease.
Bob Lanphear is an award-winning Graphic Artist with a deep background in innovative, concept-to-completion design, communications and video. For more than 30 years, he has worked with start-ups, non-profits and lean organizations in the fields of Alternative Medicine, Personal Transformation, Spirituality, Community-building, Public Health and Sustainable Banking, helping to craft the narratives that catalyze change in the world. He finds inspiration in the intersection of design principles and cutting-edge technologies, bringing awareness to new and transformative ideas.