Sometimes people die or are seriously harmed because they think that it’s not okay to call a time out and ask some questions. It’s as if they feel like they’re on a moving conveyor belt and it’s bad form to hop off. But unless it’s a life-threatening emergency, there’s usually time to ask the relevant questions.
July 2, 2010
July 1, 2010
June 30, 2010
When I spoke recently with a group of senior citizens, the most common refrain as they recounted terrible tragedies — typically, the needless death of a spouse at the hands of the health care system — was, “That’s health care. There’s nothing anybody can do about it.” This fatalistic assumption that nothing can be done to change the outcome can become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
June 29, 2010
Realize that you can break out of the Greek tragedy mold — you can often get better results from health care by taking an active role. A feature of Greek tragedies is a chorus that chants, in effect, “A terrible tragedy is about to befall us,” and then it does. It doesn’t have to be that way. My new book Killer Cure: Why health care is the second leading cause of death in America and how to ensure that it’s not yours offers a toolkit to help you.
June 28, 2010
Myth or fact: health care causes so many problems, it’s best just to avoid it at all costs.
Fact: Avoiding all health care isn’t an effective approach to dealing with its problems. For one reason, sometimes injuries or illnesses occur even in people who take excellent care of themselves — if you are in an automobile accident, you still need a cast put on your broken arm even if you always eat your vegetables. If your approach is to avoid health care, you may be spectacularly unprepared to deal with it when you or someone you care about ends up in the emergency room.
A typical Greek tragedy features “a heroic individual who is often overcome by the very obstacles he is struggling to remove.” (from The Free Dictionary online) Health care often looks like one big Greek tragedy.