Friday, July 20, 2007

Michael Moore hits a home-run

I was brought up with a liberal bent. I was taught to value life and that we ought to treat others as we would like to be treated. As a result I have always thought that universal health care is a wonderful idea.

Sicko—the movie by Michael Moore, like most of his work, is an entertaining and provacative film. Moore points out the many flaws in the US healthcare system today; he shows why even those of us with healthcare coverage ought to be worried by industry trends toward denying patients coverage; and he pulls aside the curtain of FUD (fear, uncertainty, and doubt) about the quality of care in countries that have instituted a single payer (government run) health care system—a system most other industrialized countries have.

In particular, he refutes the notion that government run services (in the US) are universally bad…as proof he points to libraries, police services and firefighters. He also demolishes the notion that government care = rationed care, at least vis a vie the rationing that HMOs already perform in order to secure their own profits. Finally he points out that the US spends the most money on health care (both per capita and as a % of GCP) despite the fact that more than 1 in 6 Americans lack insurance, and by extension access, to health care.

In essence, we pay more and get less in the American health care system. How interesting that all the other industrialized nations have single payer system of care and get remarkable results.

Mike, thanks for packaging all the facts and figures in such an entertaining and persuasive piece. Go see Sicko if you are interested in improving the US health care system.


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