An American Sickness:
How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take It Back
This event includes a book signing
April 13, 2017
Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138
This event is free; no tickets are required.
Harvard Book Store welcomes editor in chief of Kaiser Health News and former New York Times senior writer ELISABETH ROSENTHAL for a discussion of her book, An American Sickness: How Healthcare Became Big Business and How You Can Take It Back.
About An American Sickness
Award-winning New York Times reporter Dr. Elisabeth Rosenthal reveals the dangerous, expensive, and dysfunctional American healthcare system, and tells us exactly what we can do to solve its myriad of problems.
It is well documented that our healthcare system has grave problems, but how, in only a matter of decades, did things get this bad? Dr. Elisabeth Rosenthal doesn't just explain the symptoms; she diagnoses and treats the disease itself. Rosenthal spells out in clear and practical terms exactly how to decode medical doublespeak, avoid the pitfalls of the pharmaceuticals racket, and get the care you and your family deserve. She takes you inside the doctor-patient relationship, explaining step by step the workings of a profession sorely lacking transparency. This is about what we can do, as individual patients, both to navigate a byzantine system and also to demand far-reaching reform.
Breaking down the monolithic business into its individual industries—the hospitals, doctors, insurance companies, drug manufacturers—that together constitute our healthcare system, Rosenthal tells the story of the history of American medicine as never before. The situation is far worse than we think, and it has become like that much more recently than we realize. Hospitals, which are managed by business executives, behave like predatory lenders, hounding patients and seizing their homes. Research charities are in bed with big pharmaceutical companies, which surreptitiously profit from the donations made by working people. Americans are dying from routine medical conditions when affordable and straightforward solutions exist.
Dr. Rosenthal explains for the first time how various social and financial incentives have encouraged a disastrous and immoral system to spring up organically in a shockingly short span of time. The system is in tatters, but we can fight back. An American Sickness is the frontline defense against a healthcare system that no longer has our well-being at heart.
"In this in-depth analysis of a malfunctioning system, Rosenthal makes a compelling case against the hospital and pharmaceutical executives behind the 'money chase,' and it’s hard to imagine a more educated, credible guide . . . The patients she interviewed share mind-boggling stories . . . She builds her case with one damning statistic after another . . . Rosenthal presents solutions both personal and societal in this commanding and necessary call to arms." —Booklist, starred review
"Elisabeth Rosenthal’s meticulous history of the crisis in American health care should be required reading for our generation. I have not read another volume that diagnoses the 'deeply, perhaps fatally, flawed'system of health insurance and delivery with such lucidity, dissects its critical shortcomings, and provides such a clear prescription for its ills. Bold, imaginative, tautly written and filled with fury and compassion, this book will serve as the definitive guide to the past and future of health care in America." —Siddhartha Mukherjee, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of The Emperor of All Maladies and The Gene
"Dr. Elisabeth Rosenthal, a physician turned tenacious reporter, shows how the ‘highly dysfunctional’ American health care system turned the Gentle Art of Healing into a Greedy Arsenal of Profit, where everybody does well—except the patient. She also teaches us how to fight back against useless treatments, outrageous fees, and bewildering bills." —T. R. Reid, bestselling author of The Healing of America, The United States of Europe, The Chip, and Confucius Lives Next Door
Walking from the Harvard Square T station: 2 minutes
As you exit the station, reverse your direction and walk east along Mass. Ave. in front of the Cambridge Savings Bank. Cross Dunster St. and proceed along Mass. Ave for three more blocks. You will pass Au Bon Pain, JP Licks, and TD Bank. Harvard Book Store is located at the corner of Mass. Ave. and Plympton St.
Unable to attend a Harvard Book Store author event? You can still pre-order a signed book by one of our visiting authors.
While we can't guarantee fulfillment of a signed book pre-order, our authors are almost always able to sign extra books to fulfill such orders.
Ordering a signed book on harvard.com:
- Add the book to your shopping cart and then click Checkout.
- Specify in Order Comments that you want a signed copy of the book.
- Please note: online orders for signed copies must be placed at least one business day before the event. If you are ordering the day of, please call us instead.
Ordering a signed book by phone:
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Can I request a personalized inscription?
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