Health Care on the Critical List

Although America spends close to 11% of its Gross National Product on health care, many people, particularly the poor, receive inadequate attention. This timely documentary asks:

  • Can we contain the rising cost of medical care?
  • If not, how will we decide who will receive ever-precious medical care?
  • Will we deny ourselves new technologies because the cost is too high?
  • Can every American, rich or poor, expect quality health care?

Patients, doctors, hospital administrators and health policy experts share with us their perspective on the current health care crisis. We see how a range of alternative health care financing systems (HMO's, PPO's and DRG's) discourage excess spending. By changing the financial incentives of doctors and hospitals we see how these cost containment schemes can reduce hospital stays and unnecessary tests and procedures, but they may also compromise the quality of care.

Access to necessary health care is also being compromised as Medicare and Medicaid tighten eligibility requirements and reduce benefits. Business is also shifting more of the burden of medical costs to workers. While some hospitals continue their commitment to care for all people, the "safety net" is being threatened.

The way we pay for health care affects how hospitals are run, how doctors practice medicine, and ultimately how patients are treated.


Golden Gate Award, San Francisco Film Festival, 1985


"A timely study, well written and illustrated for all those concerned with rising medical expenses. Recommended."
-Landers Film Reviews

"A reminder that, in the zeal to cut costs, people in need should not be cut off."
- Booklist


Type Price
Streaming Access (1-year) $149.00
Streaming Access (3-year) $299.00
Streaming Access (Perpetual) $499.00
DVD $99.00
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