In 1735, Benjamin Franklin published a letter in The Pennsylvania Gazette, offering his now famous axiom, “An Ounce of Prevention is worth a Pound of Cure.” He was speaking at the time to fire safety, but his message today rings as loud as a five-alarm bell regarding American health care: wellness and prevention work more efficiently and cost-effectively toward a solution than does any attempt to quench a dire situation later.
With his letter, Franklin launched a wellness and prevention program of his own aimed at managing and containing one of the critical health and safety issues of his day. Franklin personally coached a group of men on effective use of equipment and appropriate actions to be taken at every fire. The brigade met monthly to discuss fire prevention, and eventually spawned other fire-safety groups.
To foster a sense of personal accountability, homeowners were mandated to have leather fire-fighting buckets