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The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care Paperback – August 31, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
"You don't necessarily realize it while you're reading, but you're talking Comparative Health Economics 101. With a really fun professor." --Daily Kos
"Not many writers of any ilk... can match T.R. Reid's ability to bring a light, witty touch to really serious topics--like health policy around the globe." --New America Foundation
Top Customer Reviews
There's no question something needs to be done to fix the US health care system. The idea that the richest and most technologically-advanced country would let people die because they can't get the care they need or go bankrupt because they get sick is absurd. That is why the current debate about health care reform is needed. The problem though is that's it's hard to know what we're looking at when filtered through politicians and the majority of the media coverage. They focus on the extremes, especially those opposed to reform who mischaracterize the systems in other countries as `socialized medicine'. In this context, Reid provides a useful voice to the debate- whether you agree with his prescriptions or not. He de-stigmatizes the systems of other countries and explains why we're not as far removed from them as we think.
He shows us how other countries' systems are different, but also alike. Some `socialist' countries have private insurance and private doctors. In fact, Reid demonstrates how some countries actually have more choice than the US. In Germany for example, one can choose from hundreds of different insurance plans and go to any doctor, whereas US citizens are generally limited to one employer's plan and only `in-network' doctors.Read more ›
The timing of this book is uncanny. Everyone who cares one whit about health care in the US should read it... and LISTEN to what it has to tell us.
The fundamental thesis of the book is that the US healthcare system can and must learn and adapt ideas from various other healthcare systems - the idea is not radical at all. What is unique about this book is that Reid systematically and convincingly disproves the common arguments centered on the notions of "socialized medicine". A sub-text of this thesis is perhaps a bit more novel than his original thesis - US doesn't have a healthcare delivery problem, but has a significant problem financing it. This re-framing of the problem, clearly and deliberately divorcing the clinical resources/processes from the administrative (non-clinical) processes, is very helpful in focusing the arguments Reid wants to make. While one could argue that this re-framing is oversimplification and too biased against payers, it becomes to a open-minded reader that, at least in the US context, it is absolutely critical to view the economics side of healthcare first. Reid convincingly makes an argument that the "capitalistic" idealism US markets crave for and swear for are not channeled appropriately or are in fact, have the wrong incentive structure.
Whether you agree with that viewpoint or not, the detailed global journey of Reid and his quasi-functional shoulder, helps a reader lead a vicarious patient life in a wide variety of settings, some more similar to the US than others. (Having grown up entirely in India, I certainly can relate to and think that the author's portrayal of India's healthcare system is accurate and presented in a matter-of-fact manner).Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Good quality for the listed price! I am one happy camper! :)Published 7 days ago by Amazon Customer
THis book is tremendously insightful and informative. It was totally captivating from the first page to the last. It was the best book I read that year.Published 13 days ago by Mugishu Ken
Very easy and interesting read! I had to get this book for one of my classes, so I didn't expect to care much for it. Read morePublished 14 days ago by Stephanie Y.
A superb book. T.R. Reid is a journalist who has an excellent writing style. He identifies and examines all of the various types of health care systems in the world--Single... Read morePublished 1 month ago by S. Freeman
I bought this book for a class that I was taking. We were only required to read the first 5 or 6 chapters, but it was so engrossing that I finished the whole thing. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Wesley Juett
Rec'd the book the next day...enjoying the read....highly recommend for anyone in the Healthcare field ....Published 3 months ago by kjforce
Everyone should read Mr. Reid's book, an early take on what is now a "major attention" issue, the cost, quality and access to healthcare around the world, providing food... Read morePublished 3 months ago by jgh