No one can say it like Bill Maher. So here I get his take on the Medical Science in the US. This program happened during the Democratic primaries before the first Obama elections. As usual, very incisive and hilarious!
The state of US healthcare is really bad. And by default, it is not just US healthcare – but this culture of popping pills and doing unnecessary procedures has become an epidemic every where in the world. Sometimes, just exercising regularly can help. Yoga, if done right, can of course be a life saver.
There was a time when doctors could read a pulse of a patient and know if there was something wrong with the person. One didn’t have to keep sitting waiting for an hour for the RN to come and take your BP and then wait again to prescribe a series of tests before the Doc would say – “Haven’t been able to zero in on the exact ailment, lets wait and do some more tests”.
For example, I went to the best Rheumatologist in town for Gout. She put me through MRI, X-Rays, even Skin culture and testing, Urine and Blood tests of course. After a month of tests, she finally told me – Am not able to say conclusively if it is Gout or not. Let us wait for the next outbreak of pain and then we will know.
I just stood there with my mouth open! What???!! After all these bloody (some literally) tests, you want me to go through the Gout pain for 3-4 days AGAIN??!!! And, YOU are the best amongst all the Rheumatologists (now, whatever the heck they may be given your line of inquiry and treatment!!) that I can lay my hands on in this town??
There was a time things were simpler. I would go to the local neighborhood Doc in India. He would check my pulse, ask me questions, think (using his years of wisdom and knowledge) and prescribe some pills. And that was IT! I wouldn’t see him again for years!
With all the advances of medical science, the specter of earning money – LOTS and LOTS of money – from that work has virtually made those advances completely useless in many ways. AIDS medicine is there, but not for African poor who suffer the most. More people die of Malaria than “Restless feet”, yet more money goes into silly “syndromes” – which I suspect are invented in the pharma labs than happening in normal life – than actual work that can save lives.
Medical Science follows money. And money is where the fads, laziness, obesity, and mental / chronic illnesses are. Most of these are “made up” by people who have a bad lifestyle. The reason for most of these illnesses is not in some issue with the genes or body a person has gotten, but what he / she has done with it.
Like Bill Maher says very correctly, some researchers have found that Exercise is as good a cure for depression as some of the top pills are!
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