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#360571 - 10/20/0903:38 AMRe: What to do about healthcare? Can it be fixed?
Loc: Valley Cottage, NY
...and all the people that travel over the border to get the same medicine that they would pay much more for in the US!
I've mentioned before that my wife and I worked on a documentary for PBS called "Critical Condition" that told the story of several people that got lost in our health system, all of them were employed and hard working, but didn't have plans that covered their medical problems, it's a difficult film to watch
One of the stories was about Carlos, a chef in a Los Angeles French restaurant, diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis, with very developed spinal fusion. At one point he drives to Mexico, and buys a prescription drug at a pharmacy on a street corner, and pays about 3 dollars compared to the $90 (I forgot the exact price, sorry) that he normally paid for the SAME drug in Los Angeles
He had gone to Mexico to consider a surgery to help him straighten his spine, and help him breathe better, because of the AS, but when they told him it would cost $40,000, he knew there was no way he could raise that kind of money
But ultimately, he got a lucky turn, in a way, and here's something that we can be proud of as Americans, despite our lack of national coverage:
A doctor at UCLA met Carlos at a free health fair, knew he was in real trouble, and with the help of the publicity generated by the film as it was being made, arranged to get Carlos that same surgery. For free. It was estimated that the difficult complex procedure (similar to Alan on this forum wrote about?) would have cost $300,000 in private practice
The other three stories in the film don't have such happy endings, unfortunately. I look forward to a time when we don't hear about (or actually live through) stories like this!