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Health Policy

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  1. 0 reviews 0 5 3 3 out of 5 stars 3/5
    9.1 hrs • 10/7/2014 • Unabridged

    In Being Mortal, bestselling author Atul Gawande tackles the hardest challenge of his profession: how medicine can not only improve life but also the process of its ending. Medicine has triumphed in modern times, transforming birth, injury, and infectious disease from harrowing to manageable. But in the inevitable condition of aging and death, the goals of medicine seem too frequently to run counter to the interest of the human spirit. Nursing homes, preoccupied with safety, pin patients into railed beds and wheelchairs. Hospitals isolate the dying, checking for vital signs long after the goals of cure have become moot. Doctors, committed to extending life, continue to carry out devastating procedures that in the end extend suffering.  Gawande, a practicing surgeon, addresses his profession’s ultimate limitation, arguing that quality of life is the desired goal for patients and families. Gawande offers examples of freer, more socially fulfilling models for assisting the infirm and dependent elderly, and he explores the varieties of hospice care to demonstrate that a person’s last weeks or months may be rich and dignified. Full of eye-opening research and riveting storytelling, Being Mortal asserts that medicine can comfort and enhance our experience even to the end, providing not only a good life but also a good end.

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    Being Mortal

    9.1 hrs • 10/7/14 • Unabridged
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  2. 0 reviews 0 5 4 4 out of 5 stars 4/5
    9.7 hrs • 4/1/2013 • Unabridged

    Conflicts of interest, misrepresentation of clinical trials, hospital price-fixing, and massive expenditures for procedures of dubious efficacy—these and other critical flaws leave little doubt that the current US health-care system is in need of an overhaul. In this essential guide, preeminent physician Nortin Hadler urges American health-care consumers to take time to understand the existing system and to visualize what the outcome of successful reform might look like. Central to this vision is a shared understanding of the primacy of the relationship between doctor and patient. Hadler shows us that a new approach is necessary if we hope to improve the health of the populace. Rational health care, he argues, is far less expensive than the irrationality of the status quo. Taking a critical view of how medical treatment, health care finance, and attitudes about health, medicine, and disease play out in broad social and political settings, Hadler applies his wealth of experience and insight to these pressing issues, answering important questions for citizen-patients and policy makers alike.

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    The Citizen Patient by Nortin M. Hadler, MD

    The Citizen Patient

    9.7 hrs • 4/1/13 • Unabridged
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  3. 8.0 hrs • 2/10/2013 • Unabridged

    Amid a growing consensus that the staggering toll of gun violence in the United States is an urgent public health issue, the Johns Hopkins University’s Bloomberg School of Public Health has convened experts on gun policy and violence from the United States and selected other countries to summarize relevant research and its implications for policymakers and concerned citizens. Legal scholars weigh in on the constitutionality of recommended policies, and researchers present new data on public support for a wide array of policies designed to reduce gun violence. Collected for the first time in one volume, this reliable empirical research and legal analysis will inform the policy debate by helping lawmakers and opinion leaders identify the policy changes that are most likely to reduce gun violence in the United States. Researchers draw on new and existing studies on US gun policies to demonstrate both the weaknesses of current federal gun policies and the efficacy of various state laws designed to reduce firearm availability to high-risk groups. By analyzing scientific and legal data, the contributors provide evidence in support of enhanced regulation and oversight of licensed gun dealers, background checks for private sales, and purchaser licensing. Lessons from bans of assault weapons and of large-capacity magazines are considered, as is the promise of “smart guns,” which could be fired only by authorized users. Compelling case studies from Australia, Scotland, and Brazil demonstrate effective policy responses to gun violence that have led to significant reductions in gun-related deaths. The book concludes with data on public support for strengthening gun laws and Second Amendment considerations.

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    Reducing Gun Violence in America by Daniel W. Webster, ScD, MPH, Jon S. Vernick, JD, MPH

    Reducing Gun Violence in America

    Foreword by Michael R. Bloomberg
    Read by Traber Burns
    8.0 hrs • 2/10/13 • Unabridged
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  4. 13.0 hrs • 1/8/2013 • Unabridged

    In 2007, David Goldhill’s father died from infections acquired in a hospital, one of more than two hundred thousand avoidable deaths per year caused by medical error. The bill was enormous, and Medicare paid it. These circumstances left Goldhill angry and determined to understand how world-class technology and personnel could coexist with such carelessness, and how a business that failed so miserably could be paid in full. Catastrophic Care is the eye-opening result. Blending personal anecdotes and extensive research, Goldhill presents us with cogent, biting analysis that challenges the basic preconceptions that have shaped our thinking for decades. Contrasting the Island of health care with the Mainland of our economy, he demonstrates that high costs, excess medicine, terrible service, and medical error are the inevitable consequences of our insurance-based system. He explains why policy efforts to fix these problems have invariably produced perverse results, and how the new Affordable Care Act is more likely to deepen than to solve these issues. Goldhill steps outside the incremental and wonkish debates to question the conventional wisdom blinding us to more fundamental issues. He proposes a comprehensive new way, where the customer (the patient) is first, a system focused on health and maintaining it, a system strong and vibrant enough for our future. If you think health care is interesting only to institutes and politicians, think again: Catastrophic Care is surprising, engaging, and brimming with insights born of questions nobody has thought to ask. Above all it is a book of new ideas that can transform the way we understand a subject we often take for granted.

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    Catastrophic Care

    13.0 hrs • 1/8/13 • Unabridged
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  5. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    9.3 hrs • 11/17/2010 • Unabridged

    “My name is Wendell Potter, and for twenty years I worked as a senior executive at health insurance companies. I saw how they confuse their customers and dump the sick—all so they can satisfy their Wall Street investors.”—Senate testimony, June 24, 2009 Wendell Potter is the insurance industry’s worst nightmare. In June 2009, Potter made national headlines with his scorching testimony before the Senate panel on health care reform. This former senior vice president of CIGNA explained how health insurers make promises they have no intention of keeping, how they flout regulations designed to protect consumers, and how they skew political debate with multibillion-dollar public relations campaigns designed to spread disinformation. Potter had walked away from a six-figure salary and two decades as an insurance executive, because he could no longer abide the routine practices of an industry where the needs of sick and suffering Americans take a backseat to the bottom line. The last straw was when he visited a rural health clinic and saw hundreds of people standing in line in the rain to receive treatment in stalls built for livestock. In Deadly Spin, Potter takes listeners behind the scenes to show how a huge chunk of our absurd health care spending actually bankrolls a propaganda campaign and lobbying effort focused on protecting one thing: profits. Whatever the fate of the current health care legislation, it makes no attempt to change that fundamental problem. Potter shows how relentless PR assaults play an insidious role in our political process anywhere that corporate profits are at stake—from climate change to defense policy. Deadly Spin tells us why—and how—we must fight back.

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    Deadly Spin

    9.3 hrs • 11/17/10 • Unabridged
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  6. 5.5 hrs • 8/3/2010 • Unabridged

    In The Truth About Obamacare, Sally C. Pipes—president of the Pacific Research Institute and an acknowledged expert on health care reform—reveals what democrats in Congress and President Barack Obama don’t want you to know: Obamacare is even worse than most critics suspect. Debunking the myths that the current administration has touted, Pipes shows exactly what the new health care law will mean for you, your family, your doctor, and your wallet. Among the myths Pipes will bust:Myth One: every American will have access to care.Myth Two: if you like your doctor and your insurance, nothing will change.Myth Three: Obamacare will save us from “spending too much” on health care.Myth Four: Obamacare will make our health care more “efficient” the way that European health care is—or actually is not. The Truth About Obamacare reveals how, contrary to its promises, Obamacare will make health care more expensive, limit your options, lead to deteriorating medical care, and weaken America’s already frail economy.

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    The Truth About Obamacare

    5.5 hrs • 8/3/10 • Unabridged
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  7. 10.4 hrs • 4/30/2010 • Unabridged

    After a year-long political war, in March 2010 President Obama and the Democratic leaders of Congress achieved a victory that has eluded lawmakers for seventy-five years: an overhaul of America’s health-care system. In this indispensable book, the staff of the Washington Post tells the story of health-care reform and explains what it means for the American people. In the book’s first section, the Washington Post’s reporter embedded in the White House provides a behind-the-scenes narrative of how Obama and the Democrats pushed through health-care reform in the face of nearly unanimous Republican opposition. This section traces the tortured evolution of the legislation, showing how the Senate killed the public option, how the January 2010 victory of Republican senator Scott Brown left the Democrats scrambling, and how Democratic leaders ultimately negotiated among entrenched political factions—including disillusioned Democrats—to reach a compromise. What does this final package include? The book’s second section provides an accessible summary of the legislation that Obama signed into law in March 2010. In the third section, Washington Post writers answer the most pressing questions about the health-care legislation’s immediate impact. Most importantly, how will the new bill affect individuals—small-business owners, uninsured Americans with pre-existing conditions, and twenty-somethings on their parents’ policies? This is a must-read for anyone who wants to understand how this legislation came into being and what the new health-care program means.

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    Landmark by the Staff of the Washington Post

    Landmark

    10.4 hrs • 4/30/10 • Unabridged
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