Monday, May 12, 2008

New reviews of Mired

From Midwest Book Review's California Bookwatch Health and Medicine Shelf:
A shocking note Americans don't know about medical bills: They don't reflect the costs of the medicine itself. "Mired in the Health Care Morass: An Alaskan Takes On America's Dysfunctional Medical System for his Uninsured Daughter" is the tale of accomplished author and geophysicist Neil Davis's fight against the American Health care system and how it is extorting Americans when they are at their most vulnerable - when they are ill themselves or deathly concerned for the well being of their loved ones. With advice to fight these corrupt practices and get the more correct and proper hospital bill, [this book] is highly recommended for anyone who has been scorned by the American health care system and for community library social issues shelves everywhere.
And from Humane Medicine, a Canadian publication, comes this:
Davis’s book is an important contribution to the literature on the American Health Care System since it is written by a consumer rather than a professional provider of medical services. Davis structured the book around the experiences that his family endured when his adult daughter, Patricia, was diagnosed with lung cancer....

Given all of Davis’ discoveries, he concluded that there are four criteria for an effective health care system. First, an effective health care system provides comprehensive health coverage for all citizens. If not, the poorest individuals will get inadequate health care. Second, a health care system ensures that health care is distributed to citizens according to their ability to pay. Otherwise, the poorest members of that society are penalized by paying a higher proportion of their financial resources for health care. Third, each health care system should provide uniform payment for necessary health care services. Fourth, prescription drug prices must be regulated, either by fixing drug prices or regulating pharmaceutical industry profits. For this to occur, the government must assume the primary role in operating the health care system.

Thus, in conclusion, this book will be especially relevant to consumers of heath care and is an eye opener for those who may be seriously ill in the United States and are trying to understand why receiving health care creates serious financial difficulties for them.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Another four-star review from LibraryThing

A review from April 25 on LibraryThing:
The many charts and statistics he uses to illustrate his findings can be hard to understand at times, but believe it or not they accurately illustrate his point that the complexity of the American system creates expense. He skewers some fondly held myths about the U.S. Health care system and shines light on the health care systems in other nations. He also gives his prescription for how the U.S. Health care system can be changed.

Neil Davis has experiences in being a consumer of health care that most of us never hope to have, but which will become increasingly commonplace as the health care becomes increasingly broken. His answers to the health care crises (universal, uniform payments, distributed to patients regardless of ability to pay, regulation of drug companies) are well thought out and do not come from a place of a particular political ideology but instead from his own experiences and research. His book is well researched and a convincing call to radically overhaul the American health care system from someone who has experienced the worst that the American health care system has to offer.
John Conyers reprints a list of four myths about universal health care by Dr. Marcia Angell. Davis sums up an answer to her myth #4, "Claims the government can't do anything right," in his index (look up "Mistrust in government").