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category: Social Science
published: May 2018
publisher: Douglas & McIntyre

All Together Healthy

A Canadian Wellness Revolution

by Andrew MacLeod

tagged: disease & health issues, public health, health policy

Never before have individuals faced so much conflicting information about how to be healthy: a constant rotation of fad diets, extreme workout regimens and celebrity-endorsed supplements are regularly hyped as the latest cure for all modern ills. We also maintain a massive health care system that absorbs a steadily growing share of public spending. As health has increasingly come to occupy a prominent role in our lives and headlines, however, we’ve tended to ignore that many of the the most significant contributors to making and keeping us well lie outside both the medical system and our individual control—income, education, employment, housing, environmental factors and social supports.

In All Together Healthy, award-winning author Andrew MacLeod digs deep to discover how to build a healthy society, examines inequities within Canada and draws on international comparisons to assess why Canada’s high spending on health care has failed to achieve better results. Meticulously researched and enlivened with interviews and personal stories, MacLeod explains the complexities of public health policy in an immediate and approachable way, making a passionate case for how best to maximize the health of the many.

In Canada, this is a moment of political optimism, where the path to a healthier society seems possible, but it is uncertain whether promised changes will happen. All Together Healthy defines what’s at stake and articulates a vision of a future where the health and well-being of all citizens is of central importance.

About the Author

Andrew MacLeod is the Legislative Bureau Chief for TheTyee.ca website. His work has been referred to in the BC legislature, Canadian House of Commons and senate. He won a 2006 Association of Alternative Newsweeklies award for news writing and was a finalist for a 2007 Western Magazine Award for best article in BC and the Yukon. His reporting has appeared in Monday Magazine, the Georgia Straight, BC Business, 24 Hours, the San Francisco Bay Guardian, Detroit's MetroTimes, Portland's Willamette Week and elsewhere. Andrew lives with his family in Victoria, BC.

Editorial Reviews

All Together Healthy makes the compelling case that poor health is caused by societal factors such as income inequality and lack of investment in early childhood. MacLeod combines storytelling and evidence in a passionate and timely call for all of us to rethink our conception of and approach to health and to participate in building the much healthier society we could be.

— Monika Dutt, M.D., Executive Director of Upstream and past chair of Canadian Doctors for Medicare

At a time when the term 'social determinants of health' is entering mainstream political discourse, Andrew MacLeod provides a good primer on what the term means, and why it matters. In short, All Together Healthy asks, and answers, the all-important question: What if Canada had a health system rather than just a sickness care system?"

— André Picard, author of Matters of Life and Death: Public Health Issues in Canada

Well researched, clear and convincing, All Together Healthy makes a strong case for improving our healthcare system by outlining the social factors that comprise wellbeing. The more we think 'together' the healthier we'll be—sings the wellness revolution.

— Raffi Cavoukian, singer, author, founder of Child Honouring

Thoughtful and well-researched, All Together Healthy makes a compelling case that we could all be healthier if we put more focus on becoming an equal, inclusive society.

— Linda McQuaig, journalist and co-author of The Trouble with Billionaires

“...[a] title worth recommending is Andrew MacLeod’s All Together Healthy: A Canadian Wellness Revolution ... Building on his impressive 2015 examination of poverty in B.C., A Better Place on Earth, MacLeod’s newer book explores the relationship between public health and factors outside of the acute-care system—such as income, education, housing, and the environment—that affect life expectancy and overall well-being.” ~ Charlie Smith, The Georgia Straight, October 18, 2018

— The Georgia Straight

Andrew MacLeod has created a masterpiece that reflects universal influences on human health, illustrating how our health is impacted by broad social patterns, especially social marginalization. This inspiring book is a compelling argument against empty, self-interested rhetoric, and for enacting real, comprehensive and intelligently informed kindness towards all citizens, in order to lift up society as a whole.

— Warren Bell, family physician and past founding president of the Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment

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