Episodes
In the final episode of the season, David highlights pro tips from the experts themselves: patient advocates Linda Michelson and AnnMarie McIlwain. Dr. David Blumenthal of The Commonwealth Fund joins to shine the light on tangible solutions on how to restructure our national health care system.   Resources from the episode: Contact Linda Michelson: https://medicalbillproblems.com/  Contact AnnMarie McIlwain and her team:...
Published 06/10/21
From the start of our show, we’ve asked listeners to share stories about navigating the American health care system. Today, David talks with those of you who have had to fight for health care in order to manage chronic illnesses, secure gender-affirming surgeries, and help children receive developmental therapies for Down Syndrome.   Resources from the episode: Planned Parenthood transgender identity terms and labels:...
Published 06/03/21
Medical jargon is a thing of the past and health literacy is now en vogue – and can actually save patients’ lives according to our guest, Dr. Lisa Fitzpatrick. We're also joined by Dr. Venice Haynes and Natalie Davis who talk to us about the anxiety, confusion, and fears people across the country have about asking those life-saving health care questions and booking a doctor’s appointment in the first place.   Resources from the episode: Dr. Lisa’s interview with The Atlantic on the upside...
Published 05/27/21
America’s relationship with Dialysis is out of control. Roughly 1% of the entire federal budget is spent treating people with kidney failure. That’s billions of dollars devoted to treating one preventable illness. How did we end up with so many people on dialysis? And who’s getting rich from it? This week, we connect the dots from Richard Nixon to Dr. Evil and talk with disruptors who have some new ideas for how to fix the system. Bobby Sepucha, Will Stokes and nephrologist Dr. Natasha Dave...
Published 05/20/21
The complications started around week 18 of Marquisse Watson’s pregnancy. Six weeks later, her baby girl Alana was born premature. Marquisse and her husband Antwon had bought the baby clothes, gotten the nursery ready… but Alana passed away 36 hours after she was born. This week, we talk to Marquisse about working through her grief seven years later. We’re joined by Venice Haynes and Meredith Shockley-Smith to talk broadly about social determinants and why black babies are twice as likely to...
Published 05/13/21
The healthcare system is basically a lucrative game of tug-of-war among players – and the winner reaps a trillion dollar pot of gold. But is it a fair game? David explores the monstrous “fee-for service system” with Dr. Vivian Lee. Then, Dr. Jill Gross joins David to explore how the results can lead to a total system breakdown.     Resources from the episode: Pick up your own copy of Dr. Lee’s book, The Long Fix: Solving America's Health Care Crisis with Strategies that Work for Everyone –...
Published 05/06/21
Lauren Bard’s little girl, Sadie, had a 50/50 chance of survival when she was born 14 weeks premature. Luckily, Lauren is a nurse at Dignity Health, a Catholic hospital, so she had good insurance and knew how to protect herself...or so she thought. Instead, she ended up with a $1.7 million dollar bill. Dr. Ashish Jha also joins David this week to help us figure out how the heck this happened.   Resources from the episode: ProPublica article on Lauren’s journey, by journalist Marshall Allen...
Published 04/29/21
This week, we’re talking about upcoding, and how it can lead to $11,000 COVID tests, $629 bandaids, and mothers waiting within sprinting distance to the hospital. America has some of the best doctors and hospitals in the world, but many patients are too afraid to walk through the doors for fear of going into unnecessary debt.  Dr. Zachary Sussman, New York Times journalist Sarah Kliff and ProPublica journalist Marshall Allen, who investigate medical billing for a living, join David to shed...
Published 04/22/21
Unpredictable chaos adds up to something over time. That’s David Smith’s story, and it’s also the origin story behind our broken health care system. This week, we explore why sickness pays and health doesn’t, and how we got here in the first place. Our guests this episode are economic historian Melissa Thomasson, health care journalist Elisabeth Rosenthal and futurist Ian Morrison.    Keep up with David on twitter @CHIDavidSmith.    Resources from the episode: Learn more about the history...
Published 04/15/21
David Smith watched as chronic pain and addiction transformed his loving father into a vengeful man who was unrecognizable. David has spent a lifetime trying to outrun his father’s fate - but now he’s looking for answers. How can we build a better healthcare system and stop the cycle of sickness, trauma and loss? In episode one, we explore his family’s story, covering everything from childhood tragedy and generational trauma to opioid abuse and Mormon excommunication.    Keep up with David...
Published 04/15/21
Published 03/29/21
Trying to navigate the American healthcare system as a patient is a high-stakes game. One wrong move can leave you ruined. Starting April 15th, host David Smith speaks with people crushed by one of the most expensive and worst performing systems in the world, and helps lead us out of this maze-like system that values sickness over health. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Published 03/29/21