BENTONVILLE, Ark. (KNWA) — A new health institute aims to redefine the healthcare system across the Natural State and the nation.
“It’s no small undertaking and the fact we’re doing it in Northwest Arkansas speaks to the leadership here and the vision of what can happen here in Northwest Arkansas,” said Nelson Peacock, the president and CEO of the Northwest Arkansas Council.
With an announcement from Walmart heir Alice Walton herself, a new health institute will be formed in Northwest Arkansas to work on the issue of integrative health.
“I’m establishing the Whole Health Institute and Chopra library in Bentonville, Arkansas,” Walton said.
“Really to be a formulation and foundation for changing the healthcare system not only regionally across the state, but also across the nation,” said Peacock.
This approach will focus on the person instead of the disease and on aspirations instead of problems.
“How we can focus on prevention rather than kind of find it and fix it healthcare,” Peacock said.
He said to make this a reality, it’ll take the whole community.
Peacock said, “We’re going to bring together the best people and best minds in the business to this effort and move forward.”
This includes medical professionals, insurance companies, and large private employers.
“We need to train young doctors in whole health and integrative approaches, we need to work with employers to help them understand how we can create healthier employees, which contributes to a healthier bottom line,” said Walton.
This whole health approach is to expand access and quality of health care throughout the Northwest Arkansas area.
“It’s going to make a better region and a better state if we continue to do that,” Peacock said.
In addition to the institute is the Deepak Chopra Library.
Walton said it will serve as a “wealth of knowledge.”
“This library will create a global collection of scientific and cultural research from around the world,” she said.
Tracy Gaudet, who used to work for the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs, will serve as the director of the Whole Health Institute.
No word yet on when construction of this institute and library will begin.