Page 1 of 1 - 15 results
The Health Gap: The Challenge of an Unequal World
In Baltimore's inner-city neighborhood of Upton/Druid Heights, a man's life expectancy is sixty-three; not far away, in the Greater Roland Park/Poplar neighborhood, life expectancy is eighty-three. The same twenty-year avoidable disparity exists in the Calton and Lenzie neighborhoods of Glasgow, and in other cities around the world.In Sierra Leone, one in 21 fifteen-year-old women will die in her fertile years of a maternal-related cause; in Italy, the figure is one in 17,100; but in the United States, which spends more on healthcare than any other country in the world, it is one in 1,800. Why?Dramatic differences in health are not a simple matter of rich and poor; poverty alone doesn't drive ill health, but inequality does. Indeed, suicide, heart disease, lung disease, obesity, and diabetes, for example, are all linked to social disadvantage. In every country, people at relative social disadvantage suffer health disadvantage and shorter lives. Within countries, the higher the social status of individuals, the better their health. These health inequalities defy the usual explanations. Conventional approaches to improving health have emphasized access to technical solutions and changes in the behavior of individuals, but these methods only go so far. What really makes a difference is creating the conditions for people to have control over their lives, to have the power to live as they want. Empowerment is the key to reducing health inequality and thereby improving the health of everyone. Marmot emphasizes that the rate of illness of a society as a whole determines how well it functions; the greater the health inequity, the greater the dysfunction.Marmot underscores that we have the tools and resources materially to improve levels of health for individuals and societies around the world, and that to not do so would be a form of injustice. Citing powerful examples and startling statistics (“young men in the U.S. have less chance of surviving to sixty than young men in forty-nine other countries”), The Health Gap presents compelling evidence for a radical change in the way we think about health and indeed society, and inspires us to address the societal imbalances in power, money, and resources that work against health equity.
Deadliest Enemy: Our War Against Killer Germs
We are facing an overwhelming army of deadly, invisible enemies. We need a plan -- before it's too late.Unlike natural disasters, whose destruction is concentrated in a limited area over a period of days, and illnesses, which have devastating effects but are limited to individuals and their families, infectious disease has the terrifying power to disrupt everyday life on a global scale, overwhelming public and private resources and bringing trade and transportation to a grinding halt.In today's world, it's easier than ever to move people, animals, and materials around the planet, but the same advances that make modern infrastructure so efficient have made epidemics and even pandemics nearly inevitable. And as outbreaks of Ebola, MERS, yellow fever, and Zika have demonstrated, we are woefully underprepared to deal with the fallout. So what can -- and must -- we do in order to protect ourselves from mankind's deadliest enemy?Drawing on the latest medical science, case studies, policy research, and hard-earned epidemiological lessons, Deadliest Enemy explores the resources and programs we need to develop if we are to keep ourselves safe from infectious disease. The authors show how we could wake up to a reality in which many antibiotics no longer cure, bioterror is a certainty, and the threat of a disastrous influenza pandemic looms ever larger. Only by understanding the challenges we face can we prevent the unthinkable from becoming the inevitable.Deadliest Enemy is high scientific drama, a chronicle of medical mystery and discovery, a reality check, and a practical plan of action.
America’s Bitter Pill is Steven Brill’s acclaimed book on how the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, was written, how it is being implemented, and, most important, how it is changing - and failing to change - the rampant abuses in the healthcare industry. It’s a fly-on-the-wall account of the titanic fight to pass a 961-page law aimed at fixing America’s largest, most dysfunctional industry. It’s a penetrating chronicle of how the profiteering that Brill first identified in his trailblazing Time magazine cover story continues, despite Obamacare. And it is the first complete, inside account of how President Obama persevered to push through the law, but then failed to deal with the staff incompetence and turf wars that crippled its implementation. But by chance America’s Bitter Pill ends up being much more - because as Brill was completing this book, he had to undergo urgent open-heart surgery. Thus, this also becomes the story of how one patient who thinks he knows everything about healthcare "policy" rethinks it from a hospital gurney - and combines that insight with his brilliant reporting. The result: a surprising new vision of how we can fix American healthcare so that it stops draining the bank accounts of our families and our businesses, and the federal treasury.
Pain Killer: An Empire of Deceit and the Origin of America's Opioid Epidemic
Between 1999 and 2017, an estimated 250,000 Americans died from overdoses involving prescription painkillers, a plague ignited by Purdue Pharma’s aggressive marketing of OxyContin. Families, working class and wealthy, have been torn apart, businesses destroyed, and public officials pushed to the brink.In Pain Killer, Pulitzer Prize–winning New York Times reporter Barry Meier exposes the roots of the most pressing health epidemic of the twenty-first century. Powerful narcotic painkillers, or opioids, were once used as drugs of last resort for pain sufferers. Purdue turned OxyContin into a billion-dollar blockbuster by launching an unprecedented marketing campaign claiming that the drug’s long-acting formulation made it safer to use than traditional painkillers for many types of pain. That illusion was quickly shattered as drug abusers learned that crushing an Oxy could release its narcotic payload all at once. Even in its prescribed form, Oxy proved fiercely addictive. As OxyContin’s use and abuse grew, Purdue concealed what it knew from regulators, doctors, and patients.Here are the people who profited from the crisis and those who paid the price, those who plotted in boardrooms and those who tried to sound alarm bells. A country doctor in rural Virginia, Art Van Zee, took on Purdue and warned officials about OxyContin abuse. An ebullient high school cheerleader, Lindsey Myers, was reduced to stealing from her parents to feed her escalating Oxy habit. A hard-charging DEA official, Laura Nagel, tried to hold Purdue executives to account. The drugmaker’s owners, Raymond and Mortimer Sackler, whose names adorn museums worldwide, made enormous fortunes from the commercial success of OxyContin.In this updated edition of Pain Killer, Barry Meier breaks new ground in his decades-long investigation into the opioid epidemic. He takes readers inside Purdue to show how long the company withheld information about the abuse of OxyContin and gives a shocking account of the Justice Department’s failure to alter the trajectory of the opioid epidemic and protect thousands of lives. Equal parts crime thriller, medical detective story, and business exposé, Pain Killer is a hard-hitting look at how a supposed wonder drug became the gateway drug to a national tragedy.
Troubled Water: What's Wrong with What We Drink
Siegel, Seth M.
If you thought America’s drinking water problems started and ended in Flint, Michigan, think again. From big cities and suburbs to the rural heartland, chemicals linked to cancer, heart disease, obesity, birth defects, and lowered IQ routinely spill from our taps.Many are to blame: the EPA, Congress, a bipartisan coalition of powerful governors and mayors, chemical companies, and drinking water utilities - even NASA and the Pentagon. Meanwhile, the bottled water industry has been fanning our fears about tap water, but bottled water is often no safer.The tragedy is that existing technologies could launch a new age of clean, healthy, and safe tap water for only a few dollars a week per person.Scrupulously researched, Troubled Water is full of shocking stories about contaminated water found throughout the country and about the everyday heroes who have successfully forced changes in the quality and safety of our drinking water. And it concludes with what America must do to reverse decades of neglect and play-it-safe inaction by government at all levels in order to keep our most precious resource safe.
Where Does It Hurt?: An Entrepreneur's Guide to Fixing Health Care
A bold new remedy for the sprawling and wasteful health care industry Where else but the doctor’s office do you have to fill out a form on a clipboard? Have you noticed that hospital bills are almost unintelligible, except for the absurdly high dollar amount? Why is it that technology in other industries drives prices down, but in health care it’s the reverse? And why, in health care, is the customer so often treated as a mere bystander - and an ignorant one at that? The same American medical establishment that saves lives and performs wondrous miracles is also a $2.7 trillion industry in deep dysfunction. And now, with the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare), it is called on to extend full benefits to tens of millions of newly insured. You might think that this would leave us with a bleak choice - either to devote more of our national budget to health care or to make do with less of it. But there’s another path. In this provocative book, Jonathan Bush, cofounder and CEO of athenahealth, calls for a revolution in health care to give customers more choices, freedom, power, and information, and at far lower prices. With humor and a tell-it-like-it-is style, he picks up insights and ideas from his days as an ambulance driver in New Orleans, an army medic, and an entrepreneur launching a birthing start-up in San Diego. In struggling to save that dying business, Bush’s team created a software program that eventually became athenahealth, a cloud-based services company that handles electronic medical records, billing, and patient communications for more than fifty thousand medical providers nationwide. Bush calls for disruption of the status quo through new business models, new payment models, and new technologies that give patients more control of their care and enhance the physician-patient experience. He shows how this is already happening. From birthing centers in Florida to urgent care centers in West Virginia, upstarts are disrupting health care by focusing on efficiency, innovation, and customer service. Bush offers a vision and plan for change while bringing a break-through perspective to the debates surrounding Obamacare. You’ll learn how: • Well-intended government regulations prop up overpriced incumbents and slow the pace of innovation. • Focused, profit-driven disrupters are chipping away at the dominance of hospitals by offering routine procedures at lower cost. • Scrappy digital start-ups are equipping providers and patients with new apps and technologies to access medical data and take control of care. • Making informed choices about the care we receive and pay for will enable a more humane and satisfying health care system to emerge. Bush’s plan calls for Americans not only to demand more from providers but also to accept more responsibility for our health, to weigh risks and make hard choices - in short, to take back control of an industry that is central to our lives and our economy.
A Terrible Thing to Waste: Environmental Racism and Its Assault on the American Mind
Washington, Harriet A.
A powerful indictment of the notion of hereditary intelligence, A Terrible Thing to Waste shows how environmental racism drives the black-white IQ gap and explains what can be done to remedy toxic effects on marginalized communities.From injuries caused by lead poisoning to the devastating effects of atmospheric pollution, infectious disease, and industrial waste, Americans of color are harmed by environmental hazards in staggeringly disproportionate numbers. This systemic onslaught of toxic exposure and institutional negligence causes irreparable physical harm to millions of people across the country - cutting lives tragically short and needlessly burdening our health care system. But these deadly environments create another insidious and often overlooked consequence: robbing communities of color, and America as a whole, of intellectual power.The 1994 publication of The Bell Curve and its controversial thesis catapulted the topic of genetic racial differences in IQ to the forefront of a renewed and heated debate. Now, in A Terrible Thing to Waste, award-winning science writer Harriet A. Washington adds her incisive analysis to the fray, arguing that IQ is a biased and flawed metric, but that it is useful for tracking cognitive damage. She takes apart the spurious notion of intelligence as an inherited trait, using copious data that instead point to a different cause of the reported African American-white IQ gap: environmental racism - a confluence of racism and other institutional factors that relegate marginalized communities to living and working near sites of toxic waste, pollution, and insufficient sanitation services. She investigates heavy metals, neurotoxins, deficient prenatal care, bad nutrition, and even pathogens as chief agents influencing intelligence to explain why communities of color are disproportionately affected - and what can be done to remedy this devastating problem.Featuring extensive scientific research and Washington's sharp, lively reporting, A Terrible Thing to Waste is sure to outrage, transform the conversation, and inspire debate.
The Truth About the Drug Companies: How They Deceive Us and What to Do About It
During her two decades at The New England Journal of Medicine, Dr. Marcia Angell had a front-row seat on the appalling spectacle of the pharmaceutical industry. She watched drug companies stray from their original mission of discovering and manufacturing useful drugs and instead become vast marketing machines with unprecedented control over their own fortunes. She saw them gain nearly limitless influence over medical research, education, and how doctors do their jobs. She sympathized as the American public, particularly the elderly, struggled and increasingly failed to meet spiraling prescription drug prices. Now, in this bold, hard-hitting new book, Dr. Angell exposes the shocking truth of what the pharmaceutical industry has become–and argues for essential, long-overdue change. Currently Americans spend a staggering $200 billion each year on prescription drugs. As Dr. Angell powerfully demonstrates, claims that high drug prices are necessary to fund research and development are unfounded: The truth is that drug companies funnel the bulk of their resources into the marketing of products of dubious benefit. Meanwhile, as profits soar, the companies brazenly use their wealth and power to push their agenda through Congress, the FDA, and academic medical centers. Zeroing in on hugely successful drugs like AZT (the first drug to treat HIV/AIDS), Taxol (the best-selling cancer drug in history), and the blockbuster allergy drug Claritin, Dr. Angell demonstrates exactly how new products are brought to market. Drug companies, she shows, routinely rely on publicly funded institutions for their basic research; they rig clinical trials to make their products look better than they are; and they use their legions of lawyers to stretch out government-granted exclusive marketing rights for years. They also flood the market with copycat drugs that cost a lot more than the drugs they mimic but are no more effective. The American pharmaceutical industry needs to be saved, mainly from itself, and Dr. Angell proposes a program of vital reforms, which includes restoring impartiality to clinical research and severing the ties between drug companies and medical education. Written with fierce passion and substantiated with in-depth research, The Truth About the Drug Companies is a searing indictment of an industry that has spun out of control.
Prescription for the Future
Emanuel, Ezekiel J.
How can America's healthcare system be transformed to provide consistently higher-quality and lower-cost care? Nothing else in healthcare matters more.Prescription for the Future identifies some standout medical organizations that have achieved higher-quality, more patient-focused, and lower-cost care, and from their examples distills twelve transformational practices that could transform the entire healthcare sector.Ezekiel J. Emanuel looks at individual physician practices and organizations who are already successfully driving change, and the specific practices they have instituted. They are not the titans everyone seems to know and assume to be the "best"; instead, Emanuel has chosen a select group--from small physician offices to large multi-specialty group practices, accountable care organizations, and even for-profit companies--that are genuinely transforming care.Prescription for the Future shines a bright diagnostic light on the state of American healthcare and provides invaluable insights for healthcare workers, investors, and patients. The book gives all of us the tools to recognize the places that will deliver high-quality, effective care when we need it.
The Big Necessity
Acclaimed as "extraordinary" ( The New York Times ) and "a classic" ( Los Angeles Times ), The Big Necessity is on its way to removing the taboo on bodily waste - something common to all and as natural as breathing. We prefer not to talk about it, but we should - even those of us who take care of our business in pristine, sanitary conditions. Disease spread by waste kills more people worldwide every year than any other single cause of death. Even in America, nearly two million people have no access to an indoor toilet. Yet the subject remains unmentionable.Moving from the underground sewers of Paris, London, and New York (an infrastructure disaster waiting to happen) to an Indian slum where ten toilets are shared by 60,000 people, The Big Necessity breaks the silence, revealing everything that matters about how people do - and don't - deal with their own waste. With razor-sharp wit and crusading urgency, mixing levity with gravity, Rose George has turned the subject we like to avoid into a cause with the most serious of consequences.
The End of Epidemics: The Looming Threat to Humanity and How to Stop It
Quick, Jonathan D.
A leading doctor offers answers on the one of the most urgent questions of our time: How do we prevent the next global pandemic?The 2014 Ebola epidemic in Liberia terrified the world - and revealed how unprepared we are for the next outbreak of an infectious disease. Somewhere in nature, a killer virus is boiling up in the bloodstream of a bird, bat, monkey, or pig, preparing to jump to a human being. This not-yet-detected germ has the potential to wipe out millions of lives over a matter of weeks or months. That risk makes the threat posed by ISIS, a ground war, a massive climate event, or even the dropping of a nuclear bomb on a major city pale in comparison.In The End of Epidemics, Harvard Medical School faculty member and Chair of the Global Health Council Dr. Jonathan D. Quick examines the eradication of smallpox and devastating effects of influenza, AIDS, SARS, and Ebola. Analyzing local and global efforts to contain these diseases and citing firsthand accounts of failure and success, Dr. Quick proposes a new set of actions which he has coined "The Power of Seven," to end epidemics before they can begin.
The End of Back Pain
Roth, Patrick A.
Free yourself from back pain without surgery! Most of what you have been told about back pain is completely wrong. Now, for the first time, Dr. Patrick Roth shares his groundbreaking and highly effective plan to alleviate back pain. His progressive and innovative approach will reveal how: Back pain sometimes has little to do with the back. Pain medications can cause more pain. Weight loss does not improve back pain. You know your body best. That makes you smarter than your doctor. This back-strengthening program goes far beyond traditional abdominal core work to strategically target your "hidden core," including all the vital front, side, and back muscles that line, stabilize, and support the spine. Dr. Roth empowers your body and mind to remarkably decrease the frequency, intensity, and duration of back pain, giving you true and lasting relief.
Why ObamaCare Is Wrong for America
Most people initially had high hopes for health reform. There clearly are problems that must be fixed. The president had promised that if reform passed, everyone would be able to get health insurance, costs would go down, and we would be able to keep both our doctors and our coverage. And we were told that reform would even cut the deficit and make Medicare stronger. But the law that actually passed became a Rube Goldberg contraption that can't possibly work and that fails to meet its promises--and it will make many problems worse. Officials say it will leave at least 23 million people uninsured, it is already making health insurance more expensive, and it threatens major changes to the coverage that tens of millions of Americans have today. Seniors are frightened that its cuts to future Medicare spending will jeopardize their care, and taxpayers see a flood of red ink far into the future. ObamaCare is leaving a comet tail of broken promises as it steamrolls its way through our economy and into our lives. What happened? How could there possibly be such a big gap between promise and reality? In Why ObamaCare is Wrong for America, the authors--who work for four different conservative think tanks and have led the fight to educate the American people about the impact of ObamaCare--explain exactly what the law stipulates and how the law will affect each of us: as patients, as employees, as taxpayers, and as citizens. They also lay out a plan for reforming the law so we can get health care right. Finally, the authors share concrete steps each of us can take to put the breaks on ObamaCare.
Their Fate Is Our Fate
At the heart of this book by Nobel Prize-winning immunologist and professor Peter Doherty is this striking observation: Birds detect danger to our health and the environment before we do. Following a diverse cast of bird species around the world--from tufted puffins in Puget Sound to griffon vultures in India, pigeons in East Asia, and wedge-tailed shearwaters off the islands of Australia's Great Barrier Reef--Doherty illuminates birds' role as an early warning system for threats to the health of our planet and our own well-being. Their Fate Is Our Fate is an impassioned call not only to attention but to action. As "citizen scientists" we can collect data, vital to cutting-edge research, that depends on the birds that are all around us. Armed with our observations, scientists will continue to uncover new ways to glimpse our future in birds--and to affirm how, truly, their fate is our fate.
The Addiction Solution: Treating Our Dependence on Opioids and Other Drugs
Sederer, Lloyd I.
A groundbreaking examination of addiction from a psychiatrist and public health doctor, offering practical, proven solutions for individuals, families, and communities dealing with substance use and abuse.Written with warmth, accessibility, and vast authority, The Addiction Solution is a practical guide through the world of drug use and abuse and addiction treatment. Here, Lloyd I. Sederer, MD, brings together scientific and clinical knowledge, policy suggestions, and case studies to describe our current drug crisis and establish a clear path forward to recovery and health. In a time when so many people are affected by the addiction epidemic, when 142 people die of overdoses every day in the United States, principally from opioids, Sederer’s decades of wisdom and clinical experience are needed more than ever before.With a timely focus on opioids, Sederer takes us through the proven essentials of addiction treatment and explains why so many of our current policies, like the lingering remnants of the War on Drugs, fail to help drug users, their families, and their wider communities. He identifies a key insight, often overlooked in popular and professional writing about addiction and its treatment: namely, that people who use drugs do so to meet specific needs, and that drugs may be the best solution those people currently have. Writing with generosity and empathy about the many Americans who use illicit and prescribed substances, Sederer lays out specific, evidence-based, researched solutions to the prevention and problems of drug use, including exercise, medications, therapy, recovery programs, and community services. In this challenging time, The Addiction Solution provides practical help, comfort, and hope.
Page 1 of 1 - 15 results