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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.
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 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.
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 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.
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.
How We Do Harm: A Doctor Breaks Ranks About Being Sick in America
Brawley, Otis Webb
How We Do Harm exposes the underbelly of healthcare today - the overtreatment of the rich, the under treatment of the poor, the financial conflicts of interest that determine the care that physicians' provide, insurance companies that don't demand the best (or even the least expensive) care, and pharmaceutical companies concerned with selling drugs, regardless of whether they improve health or do harm. Dr. Otis Brawley is the chief medical and scientific officer of The American Cancer Society, an oncologist with a dazzling clinical, research, and policy career. How We Do Harmpulls back the curtain on how medicine is really practiced in America. Brawley tells of doctors who select treatment based on payment they will receive, rather than on demonstrated scientific results; hospitals and pharmaceutical companies that seek out patients to treat even if they are not actually ill (but as long as their insurance will pay); a public primed to swallow the latest pill, no matter the cost; and rising healthcare costs for unnecessary - and often unproven - treatments that we all pay for. Brawley calls for rational healthcare, healthcare drawn from results-based, scientifically justifiable treatments, and not just the peddling of hot new drugs .Brawley's personal history - from a childhood in the gang-ridden streets of black Detroit, to the green hallways of Grady Memorial Hospital, the largest public hospital in the U.S., to the boardrooms of The American Cancer Society - results in a passionate view of medicine and the politics of illness in America - and a deep understanding of healthcare today. How We Do Harm is his well-reasoned manifesto for change.
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.
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.
One by One by One: Making a Small Difference Amid a Billion Problems
Dr. Aaron Berkowitz had just finished his neurology training when he was sent to Haiti on his first assignment with Partners In Health. There, he meets Janel, a 23-year-old man with the largest brain tumor Berkowitz or any of his neurosurgeon colleagues at Harvard Medical School have ever seen. Determined to live up to Partners In Health's mission statement "to bring the benefits of modern medical science to those most in need," Berkowitz tries to save Janel's life by bringing him back to Boston for a 12-hour surgery. In One by One by One, Berkowitz traces what he learns and grapples with as a young doctor trying to bridge the gap between one of the world's richest countries and one of the world's poorest to make the first big save of his medical career.As Janel and Berkowitz travel back and forth between the high-tech neurosurgical operating rooms of Harvard's hospitals and Janel's dirt-floored hut in rural Haiti, they face countless heart-wrenching twists and turns. Janel remains comatose for months after his surgery. It's not clear he will recover enough to return to Haiti and be able to survive there. So he goes for a second brain surgery, a third, a fourth. Berkowitz brings the reader to the front lines of global humanitarian work as he struggles to overcome the challenges that arise when well-meaning intentions give rise to unintended consequences, when cultures and belief systems clash, and when it's not clear what the right thing to do is, let alone the right way to do it. One by One by One is a gripping account of the triumphs, tragedies, and confusing spaces in between as an idealistic young doctor learns the hard but necessary lessons of living by the Haitian proverb tout moun se moun--every person is a person.
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.
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.
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.
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