How to make health care an economic driver | Tray Hairston | TEDxJackson

now many of you may have an idea of what economic development is I do it's it's about job creation it's about maximizing wealth it's about creating wealth creating opportunity but I'm gonna talk about a different way to approach economic development and that is making health care and economic driver and Mississippi does a great job this area does a great job at going after projects going after the the the big auto manufacturer or the big steel company are the big widget maker but I submit to you that we can treat the healthcare industry similar to the way we treat industrial economic development projects have this all start how do we begin to think about this a little bit of the history a business delegation was led by elected officials and business folk from the Jackson area and they took a trip to Houston Texas now Houston is where the Texas Medical Center is and a little bit about the Texas Medical Center it represents about over a hundred thousand jobs ten billion dollars in local economic impact twenty thousand of those jobs are held by scientists researchers and physicians but it's a behemoth and its tentacles spread wide and far and it touches everything Texas the Texas Medical Center has its own bus system it's its own hotels the residential impact of it they all go and see coincide to develop and maintain a sense of place and purpose but this new way this new way of targeting economic development transpired when those folk went to Houston to the Texas Medical Center and they came back with a renewed sense of vision and purpose and they got to work and that's why we're here today to talk about creative ideas and new ways to approach something that may be old but take it slice it up and make it something new but why healthcare why is it why is it that we would focus on an industry like this and why not continue down the same track or the same path well yeah it's a complicated industry it's a multi-billion dollar industry but it's one of the fastest growing industries in the world 10 of the 20 top jobs fastest growing jobs are in the healthcare industry by 2018 the US will have created over 6 million additional healthcare jobs so why go after an industry like this why go after a complex highly regulated an industry where hospitals are subsidized by government an industry that has more and more laws that have sometimes ramifications if we violate those laws why go after a complicated industry like this because it's growing and it's where we are it's it's where the future is and it's where our technological advancements are going from commercialization of the research that's being done by growing research programs by the clinic programs that are being done or telemedicine through I mean if it's if it's the widgets then many medical devices the mental medical device manufacturers the pharmaceutical companies it's a broad and comprehensive complicated industry that this community has an opportunity to capitalize own so a little bit about why I think and why I'm so passionate about the healthcare industry as it applies to economic development and how we can advance the law well in 2012 we created the Mississippi healthcare industries own act and it was premise upon several zones throughout the state and one of the the main catalyst was the hospital the hospital that utilizes various services and those services are based on patient care but you need you need various things you need band-aids two syringes – all sorts of equipment that's utilized to take care of the patient but these zones were in essence created around large hospitals 375 acute care beds but we grew it so it would be able to encompass the entire state the incentives well business is built built and driven upon economic opportunity incentives and those incentives are lucrative there they consist of an ad valorem tax abatement a sales tax exemption on equipment and construction materials and an accelerated income tax depreciation deduction so those are some of the things that we piled into the legislation that we thought would be very useful for businesses to attract those healthcare related companies and again this new approach was built upon a new way of doing Economic Development never before have we gone after incentivize clinics or medical device or pharmaceutical or research R&D all of this built around the auspices of healthcare well there must be tweaks with any piece of legislation with any law that's created we have to make it better and I think one of the main ways we can make it better is that we can focus on planning and getting our communities to plan and focus and build a blueprint and reward those communities that put together comprehensive plans like the ones you see right there on the map another aspect of this law and another aspect that we have to focus on is the critical mass the the Christie Henderson's the dr. Sommers we have to get more people like that to either stay in Mississippi or recruit them here and that has to be the economic model of not only recruiting companies and growing companies organically but recruiting people and recruiting the brightest and the best and there NIH grants and there and and and getting people to stay in Mississippi to thwart the brain drain but most importantly I think it's the message it's the transformational message reducing the stigma and in allowing and seeing that Mississippi and Jackson can be great and we can have this identity around health care as an economic driver so the plan every idea I think starts with comprehensive planning bringing everybody together pulling people into a room and letting them understand and making them understand that we can do this having an identity around this idea of planning and comprehensive strategy Lake Nona Florida is a perfect example it's right outside of Orlando it used to be a golf course but through comprehensive planning through the efforts of elected officials and private business and planning that golf course is now a three billion dollar healthcare cluster Jennifer Feingold wrote an article in Fortune magazine in June 2014 and it's entitled how to build a map an American city and in this article she talked about that cluster which is now it represents over 5,000 jobs and three billion dollars in investment but it was all based on a plan and a vibrant cohesive healthcare quarter is what I think we can do here in Jackson maintaining sustainable growth and controlled growth when when you when you're exercising and executing that plan I think you have to you don't go beyond what your identity is have to know exactly what it is you can recruit exactly what it is your identity is if it's diabetes if it's thwarting diabetes which we happen to have one of the most highest per capita of diabetes in the country if it's obesity then so be it let that be your identity to thwart those types of things but at the same time capitalize on them by producing the research that can change the world so in doing that we can build this same healthcare cluster with pharmaceutical with distribution research clinics hospitals large fortune 150 companies we can do it all in the sense of this healthcare cluster that we can build in Jackson and create that identity Jackson can be so many different things but one of the things that I'm so passionate about that I think Jackson can be and leverage its many assets with its many hospitals with its many bright minds and its researchers is by creating an identity around healthcare as an economic driver thank you


  1. Play at 1.5x playback speed. 😉
    You're welcome.

  2. Comparing healthcare to other industries is laughable. The Paradigm is greatly flawed. No common sense that always requires a politically motivated 'study' for innovation. Computer scientists dont do that and use trial and error like a math problem to find the solution on the spot. That is how computers are so developed and affordable and modern medicine cant even cure basic heartburn. Bureaucratic idiots stuck in red tape of waiting for the politicians at fda to publish a 'study' despite thousands of existing studies. Many of these educated folks in medicine would fail engineering school or mechanic school. They have no common sense and a groupthink failure.

  3. The problem with highly educated people in this country is that many lack basic common sense….which is in full demonstration with this ted talk.  The average american citizen has 400.00 of savings, and declining wages. How are you going use the healthcare system as an  economic engine when the average citizen cannot participate in it.

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