Healthcare Topics

Democracy Now! continues to closely follow the movement to reform the healthcare system in the United States. We have interviewed policy makers, doctors, patients, independent journalists, academics, single payer healthcare advocates, and filmmakers.

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  • Military-web1
    As lawmakers hash out the final details of legislation to reform the nation’s healthcare system, one of the key questions is: How much will it all cost, and how will it affect the federal deficit? While $900 billion over ten years may sound like a hefty price tag, it is a mere fraction of this country’s spending on the military, which is expected to grow by at least $133.1 billion over the next decade. [includes rush transcript]
    Oct 21, 2009 | Story
  • Congress-web
    Democrats say the McCarran-Ferguson Act of 1945 has granted the insurance industry a captive market with no curbs on price fixing and other anti-competitive practices. Last week the Justice Department’s top antitrust regulator, Christine Varney, voiced support for a repeal. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi are also backing a repeal, and New York Senator Charles Schumer has called for including it as part...
    Oct 20, 2009 | Story
  • Pullenbox-web
    On Thursday, Sam Pullen was arrested at the Los Angeles offices of the insurance giant Blue Cross. He refused to give his information to police and vowed to remain in prison until Blue Cross agreed to hear demands that it stop denying doctor-recommended medical treatment to seriously ill patients. Despite his resistance, Pullen was finally ordered released from jail on Monday, against his will. In protesting Blue Shield, Sam Pullen was...
    Oct 20, 2009 | Story
  • Yesmen1-web
    The business community got a shock on Monday when its leading advocacy group appeared to make a startling announcement. A statement purporting to come from the Chamber of Commerce said the group had dropped its opposition to congressional climate change legislation and would now even support taxing carbon emissions. The news wires quickly picked up the story, and within minutes it was being reported on the websites of outlets including the New...
    Oct 20, 2009 | Story
  • Zizekweb
    Dubbed by the National Review as "the most dangerous political philosopher in the West" and the New York Times as "the Elvis of cultural theory," Slovenian philosopher and public intellectual Slavoj Žižek has written over fifty books on philosophy, psychoanalysis, theology, history and political theory. In his latest book, First as Tragedy, Then as Farce, Žižek analyzes how the United States has moved from the tragedy of...
    Oct 15, 2009 | Story
  • Healthcareweb_091014
    The Senate Finance Committee has become the fifth and final congressional panel to approve legislation to reform the nation’s healthcare system, voting 14-to-9 to approve an $829 billion measure. Maine Senator Olympia Snowe was the only Republican to support the package, which omits a public option. Talks now move behind closed doors, where Senate leaders will craft final legislation. We get analysis from Jane Hamsher of Firedoglake....
    Oct 14, 2009 | Story
  • Sanders-web
    We speak to Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, the longest-serving independent member of Congress in American history. Last week, in response to the Defund ACORN Act, he proposed an amendment to the defense appropriations bill that focuses on defense contractors who receive billions of taxpayer dollars every year. Sanders joins us to talk about ACORN, healthcare and the US occupation of Afghanistan. [includes rush transcript]
    Oct 08, 2009 | Story
  • Sickforprofit-web
    Sick for Profit, a documentary by Robert Greenwald, contrasts the salaries of insurance company CEOs with the experiences of policyholders denied medical claims. We play an excerpt. [includes rush transcript]
    Oct 08, 2009 | Story
  • Twins-web
    Stacie Ritter’s twin daughters were diagnosed with cancer at the age of four. Their insurance provider, CIGNA, denied them coverage even though they had been covered by the family’s former insurer. The incident marked just the latest chapter in the family’s ongoing troubles with the health insurance industry. A few years ago, the Ritters filed for bankruptcy due to their high medical expenses — even though they had...
    Oct 01, 2009 | Story
  • Potter-web
    Efforts to create a government-run health insurance plan were dealt a setback Tuesday after the Senate Finance Committee rejected a pair of amendments to create a public option. Both amendments were defeated when a group of Democrats, including Senate Finance Committee Chair Max Baucus, joined with Republicans to oppose the public option. We speak with Wendell Potter, the former chief spokesperson at CIGNA, one of the nation’s largest...
    Sep 30, 2009 | Story