How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take It Back
On Sale: April 11, 2017
Hardcover / e-Book
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At a moment of drastic political upheaval, a shocking
investigation into the dangerous, expensive, and
dysfunctional American healthcare system, as well as
solutions to its myriad of problems
In these troubled times, perhaps no institution has
unraveled more quickly and more completely than American
medicine. In only a few decades, the medical system has been
overrun by organizations seeking to exploit for profit the
trust that vulnerable and sick Americans place in their
healthcare. Our politicians have proven themselves either
unwilling or incapable of reining in the increasingly
outrageous costs faced by patients, and market-based
solutions only seem to funnel larger and larger sums of our
money into the hands of corporations. Impossibly high
insurance premiums and inexplicably large bills have become
facts of life; fatalism has set in. Very quickly Americans
have been made to accept paying more for less. How did
things get so bad so fast?
Breaking down this monolithic business into the individual
industries—the hospitals, doctors, insurance companies, and
drug manufacturers—that together constitute our healthcare
system, Rosenthal exposes the recent evolution of American
medicine as never before. How did healthcare, the caring
endeavor, become healthcare, the highly profitable industry?
Hospital systems, which are managed by business executives,
behave like predatory lenders, hounding patients and seizing
their homes. Research charities are in bed with big
pharmaceutical companies, which surreptitiously profit from
the donations made by working people. Patients receive bills
in code, from entrepreneurial doctors they never even saw.
The system is in tatters, but we can fight back. Dr.
Elisabeth Rosenthal doesn't just explain the symptoms, she
diagnoses and treats the disease itself. In clear and
practical terms, she spells out exactly how to decode
medical doublespeak, avoid the pitfalls of the
pharmaceuticals racket, and get the care you and your family
deserve. She takes you inside the doctor-patient
relationship and to hospital C-suites, explaining
step-by-step the workings of a system badly lacking
transparency. This is about what we can do, as individual
patients, both to navigate the maze that is American
healthcare and also to demand far-reaching reform. An
American Sickness is the front-line defense against a
healthcare system that no longer has our well-being at heart.
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