Alex Gibney, best known for his 2005 film, Enron: The Smartest Guys in the Room and his 2007 Academy Award Winning documentary, Taxi to the Dark Side has made a 90 minute documentary of my book, Money-Driven Medicine: The Real Reason Health Care Costs So Much
The Century Foundation and the New York Society for Ethical Culture are co-hosting the New York premiere on June11, 7p.m. at the New York Society for Ethical Culture, 2 West 64th Street at Central Park West. Doors open at 6:30. Admission is free. If you’re planning to attend, please RSVP Loretta Ahlrich firstname.lastname@example.org or (212) 452-7722 so that we can have a rough idea of how many people will be coming.
Alex Gibney will be there, and following the screening, he will take questions about film-making and I’ll answer questions from the audience about healthcare and healthcare reform.
Here’s a clip of the opening sequence of the film:
About the Film
Money-Driven Medicine explores how a profit-driven health care system squanders billions of health care dollars, while exposing millions of patients to unnecessary or redundant tests, unproven, sometimes unwanted procedures, and over-priced drugs and devices that, too often, are no better than the less expensive products they have replaced. As I have said on this blog, this isn’t just a waste of money. It’s ‘hazardous waste’—waste that is hazardous to our health.
In remarkably candid interviews both doctors and patients tell the riveting, sometimes funny, and often wrenching stories of a system where medicine has become a business. “We are paid to do things to patients,” says one doctor. “We are not paid to talk to them.”
Patients and physicians star in the film. They include Dr. Don Berwick, author of Escape Fire and founder of the Institute for Health Care Improvement , and Dr. Jim Weinstein, Director of Dartmouth’s Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice. ( Dr. Jack Wennberg, the founder of what I often refer to as “the Dartmouth Research” passed the torch to Weinstein in 2007.)
Lisa Lindell, a HealthBeat reader, patient advocate and author of 108 Days, also appears in the documentary, talking about her husband’s experience in a Texas hospital after he was seriously burned in a freak industrial accident.
How Physicians Inspired Money-Driven Medicine
I narrate the film, and in the course of the narration, recall how the story began:
“‘We want someone to know what is going on,’ explained one prominent physician in Manhattan. ‘But please don’t use my name. You have to promise me that. In this business, the politics are so rough—it would be the end of my career.’”
They were right. Everyone needs to know.