The Cycle | October 02, 2012
>>> tomorrow night expect two men who essentially passed the same health care legislation to take two very different positions on it. romney recently said he considers it a compliment to be called the grandfather of obama care, though he promises to repeal it if he's president. president obama is running on the signature legislation. he told personal stories to remind voters of the impact it has had. a new poll shows it divides us with 32% in favor and 36% opposed and the rest indifferent. no matter what you think of obama care, one thing that's not up for debate, our current for-profit system is broken and hurting those it's supposed to help.
>> how do we come do believe that the only way to treat disease is by giving drugs?
>> it's a microcosm with the society has.
>> soldiers' use of prescription drugs has tril pepled.
>> when you're deployed they feed you this to keep you going. mission, mission, mission. medications i was on.
>> that is from the new documentary escape fire , the fight to rescue american health care in theaters october 5th . in the guest spot today is the film's director and producer matthew heinemann. thank you for being with us.
>> thanks for having me.
>> what inspired you to create this film now, and what do you hope viewers get from it?
>> we started to make the film about three years ago, just as the health care debate was heating up. like many americans we were confused by what was happening. there's so much dividing our country. we want to figure out how the system is broken and why it didn't want to change and highlight those fixing it as well.
>> we showed in the intree there the story of sergeant yates injured in afghanistan, became addicted to painkillers when he came back and eventually through acupuncture and meditation dealt with his pain and get off the drugs he was taking. so the military really leading the way in sort of experimenting with new procedures going forward. is that true outside of just the alternative therapies you show there? is the military grate breeding ground for trying out new things in health care ?
>> the military is the only single payer system in america. they're forced to innovate. i really commend the military for, one, acknowledging they have this problem of overmedication. it's really a microcosm for the rest of the america. they recognize this problem, and they're trying to address it. it's a perfect example of an escape fire , which is sort of an outside of box idea. it's this idea that these simple solutions are right in front of us. why can't we pay attention to them?
>> we agree that the current system is not working, but you talk about in your film a shortage of primary care givers, and i know that a lot of doctors have come out and talked about how they might retire as a result of some of the changes they're anticipating in the affordable care act . should we worry about this evaporating pool of skilled doctors and care givers in the future?
>> there's already a shortage. with 30 more million people entering the pool, there's more of a shortage. for sure this is something we need to worry about. i think one of the most surprising things for us is it's not just patients who aren't happy, it's doctors who aren't happy. we see it with the story of dr. martin, a primary care doctor handcuffed by the system. she can't practice the medicine she wants to practice. she's forced to see a revolving door of patients.
>> we look at the cost and expense of the health care system . can you identify one specific -- is there one major inefficiencies, one premier inefficient in our system, and what is it?
>> we can talk an hour about that. we have a disease care system sxnt a health care system . it's a system that profits on sickness and not on health. 75% of health care costs go to preventible diseases. we need to figure out how to address this problem and how to become a healthier nation.
>> the health care discussion is incredibly important, but for a lot of people for audience members it's like vegetables. as a filmmaker, how do you make a compelling film about an issue that a lot of people don't want to go to the movie theater and talk about?
>> i think health care is one of the our biggest challenges. how do you make it entertaining. it's a boring, wanky subject. we tried to find powerful, human stores to force audiences to keep watching. we follow the story as you mentioned of the injured soldier coming out of afghanistan and his struggle to get off of the sort of monsoon of drugs that he's on. we also follow the story of a young idealistic doctor. to combat the problem, we really tried to find powerful human narratives that would be punctuated by a course of experts as well.
>> it's a powerful film. thanks so much for joining us.
>> thanks for having me.
>> straight ahead, the issue both parties got all wrong. [