Archive for the ‘Health’ Category

Sicko–Exactly What I was Thinking

July 5, 2007

This op-ed in the New York Times expresses much more eloquently and succinctly what I was thinking about Sicko than I could write here.

Philip Boffey, a Times editorial writer who specializes in science, writes:

The film is unashamedly one-sided, superficial, overstated and occasionally suspect in its details. But on the big picture — the failure to ensure that everyone who needs medical care gets it — Mr. Moore is right.

And:

Yet it is hard to know how true the stories are — Mr. Moore never gives enough details to help viewers determine — or how common the abuses may be. The stories are told from the viewpoint of the victims, with nary a peep from the insurers and not much from doctors who might know whether the refused care was appropriate.

And finally:

Mr. Moore’s heart clearly lies with the single-payer, tax-supported, governmental health systems abroad. That solution would be hard to sell here, where suspicion of the insurance companies is matched if not exceeded by suspicion of the government. Yet the case for some form of universal coverage is strong. The claim that we provide the best medical care in the world is hollow; international comparisons rank us below other industrialized countries on measures of quality, access and clinical outcomes. Mr. Moore is right to ask how a country that spends so much more on health care than any other nation can’t take care of everyone who is sick.

The movie is worth seeing, keeping these caveats in mind. The common counterargument is that even if Moore had provided a more balanced view, he would not have been taken seriously. I think that his argument would only have been stronger had he talked to doctors or others involved in creating a fuller perspective on these anecdotal cases.

Motivating people to anger is good. But it’s time to grow up, Michael Moore, make yourself even more relevant, and motivate people to actual action.

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