Customer Reviews for

The Healing of America: A Global Quest for Better, Cheaper, and Fairer Health Care

Average Rating 4
( 82 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(46)

4 Star

(13)

3 Star

(14)

2 Star

(4)

1 Star

(5)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

Most Helpful Favorable Review

9 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

How the rest of the (developed) world does it...

Timely and well-written, this tour of the major health care systems of the industrialized world provides an informed, open-minded, and realistic backdrop to the current health-care "debate". Mr. Reid takes his bad shoulder around the world and sees doctors in the UK, F...
Timely and well-written, this tour of the major health care systems of the industrialized world provides an informed, open-minded, and realistic backdrop to the current health-care "debate". Mr. Reid takes his bad shoulder around the world and sees doctors in the UK, France, Japan, India, and Canada - describing along the way the various public & private systems those countries use to provide health care. Mr. Reid does not explicitly suggest how the US should change our system, but it's hard to miss his point that the US is alone among industrialized nations in not providing universal health care - and - the fact that everyone is covered in those nations means that the per-capita cost of health care is far lower than in the US. A fine antidote to the town-hall craziness that has dominated the news recently and well worth reading.

posted by 1192547 on September 2, 2009

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review

Most Helpful Critical Review

2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

The definitive book on health care reform

Reid is clearly an advocate of health care reform, criticizing our "system" on several grounds, including the fact that it does not provide universal coverage, that health care takes up a ridiculous 17% of our GDP, that it is burdened by high administrative costs. Desp...
Reid is clearly an advocate of health care reform, criticizing our "system" on several grounds, including the fact that it does not provide universal coverage, that health care takes up a ridiculous 17% of our GDP, that it is burdened by high administrative costs. Despite our constantly beating our chests about providing "the best health care in the world", millions of Americans do not have access to that care because they earn too much to be eligible for Medicaid, earn too little to afford health insurance, or are too young to be eligible for Medicare (which is also available to those who qualify for Social Security Disability). To make matters worse, we consistently rank behind many many other countries on such measures as life expectancy and infant mortality. With regard to the latter, we rank behind such countries as Cuba and Slovenia.

Reid believes first and foremost that providing health care coverage to all citizens is a moral imperative. He notes repeatedly that the United States is the only industrialized, developed democracy that does not provide such coverage. But he argues compellingly that reform is also an economic imperative.

He identifies four basic models which describe how health care is provided in other countries, then describes those models in detail by providing an in-depth description of how different countries have implemented those different models, including two countries, Taiwan and Switzerland, which adopted major reforms of their health care systems at the same time that our legislators were rejecting Clinton's proposal in the 1990's, a proposal that never even made it to a vote in Congress.

Reid does not claim that that the other countries whose systems he describes are health care utopias. He is quick to detail the criticisms and problems that exist in the countries whose systems he describes. But what clearly emerges from his book is the fact that the other industrialized democracies all provide quality health care at affordable costs and with less burden on their economic systems than our current system provides.

This is a must read for anyone interested in this debate, despite the passage of the recent bill, which, hopefully, represents just the beginning of significant health care reform in the United States.

posted by DudesDad3 on April 18, 2010

Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 46 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 3
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 2, 2009

    How the rest of the (developed) world does it...

    Timely and well-written, this tour of the major health care systems of the industrialized world provides an informed, open-minded, and realistic backdrop to the current health-care "debate". Mr. Reid takes his bad shoulder around the world and sees doctors in the UK, France, Japan, India, and Canada - describing along the way the various public & private systems those countries use to provide health care. Mr. Reid does not explicitly suggest how the US should change our system, but it's hard to miss his point that the US is alone among industrialized nations in not providing universal health care - and - the fact that everyone is covered in those nations means that the per-capita cost of health care is far lower than in the US. A fine antidote to the town-hall craziness that has dominated the news recently and well worth reading.

    9 out of 10 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 6, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Bursting the American health bubble

    Having grown up in the UK and lived in the US for 20 years I have experienced both sides of the current health debate. I began to wonder if my memory of the British system was somehow too rose-colored or my disgust at the morality of the US system just an overreaction. This book underlines that neither is the case; it really should be a sobering read for all those apologists for the US system.
    Reid is no ideologue but simply sets out to compare health systems throughout the world. He expounds on the history and development of the various systems - there are really only 4 basic models - in various countries. His discussion is detailed and on the whole well organized, although there is some repetition at times.
    I should warn you, however, that this can make ugly reading for those of us in the USA.

    5 out of 5 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 1, 2012

    Great Read

    This book is essential reading for anyone interested the health carer debate in the US. It is written for the lay person and very informative. I now have a good idea about what other countries are doing and how parts of these plans can help us.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 5, 2010

    The Healing of America was thrust into my hands by a neighbor/friend as she was leaving for her second home in Costa Rica. She insisted I read it

    while she was away. It took me until she returned months later until guilt forced me to open it. Then, of course, I wondered why I had waited so long.
    Mr. Reid sets out to compare public health care schemes in France, Germany, England, Canada, and Japan. At the beginning, he had been to his physician in the U.S., and been advised to have his ailing shoulder replaced. This gave him a good diagnosis to bring up with each foreign doctor he consulted along his route, with some surprising suggestions for repair of the shoulder, all of which suggested replacement only as a last resort.
    In the end, Mr. Reid combs through what he has learned in order to try to establish the best system he could devise by compiling the best aspects of each of the systems he had thouroughly investigated.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 27, 2009

    An Eye Opener

    This book can be a real eye opener for anyone following the health care debate. Americans have been indoctrinated to believe that no other country can do health care like the U. S. Anyone who reads this will wonder why American media isn't telling us more about how health care is conducted in the other industrialized nations of the world. It's not the boogey man we are led to believe it is! Almost all of them do it better for a lot less cost.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 15, 2010

    Great book. Everyone in Congress should be reading it right now.

    This is a great book which really details the problems the US healthcare system is facing now and will continue to face in the future. The author goes to many countries and finds out what works and what doesn't. Its a sobering read for anyone living in the US. You will wonder why we cant get a more efficient system. The gist though is this. Our medical technology and care is A+. Our system for delivering it and its cost efficiency, and "fairness" is a D. I would hope every member of Congress would read this book, but of course I'd be surprised if even one of them has read it. They just are not that smart! So sad.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 13, 2010

    A Must Read For Caring Americans

    Here"s a snapshot of other people in "socialist" nations - Germany, France, England, Japan, Canada - are getting for their health care dollar and what we aren't. (How about $15 for an ordinary office visit-consultation in Japan?)

    Why they do it is simple: these countries have recognized that universal health care is a moral and ethical issue. How they do it is what Mr. Reid explains in detail.

    Read it, weep and get angry at our mindless approach.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 16, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    An Incredible and Comprehensive Book to be read by every American Citizen and particularly by every member of the U.S. Congress involved with Health Care.

    T.R. Reid, the author, describes the 4 major patterns of health care found around the world based on his research and his personal experiences with the health care systems in many other countries outside America. He tells us that citizens in all the major industrialized countries are critical of their own systems but there is probably not one person who would exchange their system of health care for America's "system."

    He carefully describes his own experiences with and the structure of health care systems in France, Germany, Japan, the UK, and Canada as well as the "out of pocket" approach in India, Cuba and China. While he does not seek to replace the American "system" with any one of these as superior approaches, he does try to encourage America to choose the best elements of each countries approach when reforming the American health care system.

    Every other Industrialized Nation has better health care outcomes for dramatically less cost than we do in America and the author provides numerous data to support such an argument. Many other countries make available private insurance plans but they all seem to be non-profit plans where the sole focus is on the patient and not on the stock holders. All Industrialized Nations, with successful health plans, make health plan coverage mandatory for everyone, and in addition where health insurance companies exist they are clearly regulated as are the providers with respect to allowable charges. For beginners this seems to be the only way to get control of health care costs. France, in particular, has a Vital Card that is provided to every citizen. Reid describes how the card works with an embedded chip that is updated with all a patients medical history, blood types, allergies, etc. The Doctor's offices in France have no filing cabinets and the card is simply inserted into a lap top computer to reveal, for the doctor, an entire medical history. When the doctor is done with his diagnosis and recommended treatment, he/she presses the enter key and the bill for services is immediately forwarded to the insurance company which, by gov't regulation, must pay the bill within a very brief window or be penalized.

    This book is a must read by anyone who is involved in the present health care debate or even by people who just want to understand how other governments have developed health care systems that really work giving access to all providing efficient and excellent care to their people.

    The author debunks many of the myths circulating around in America regarding health care reform in an easily understood yet concise way with much supporting material based on his own experience and research. T.R. Reid has done an incredible job organizing his material and presenting it in a way that is readily understandable and makes for easy understanding which holds the interest of any reader. I cannot help but wonder why this book was not used by our congress in developing a reform package that could have been much simpler for all of us to understand.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 3, 2010

    A must-read for any American

    With the publishing of this book T.R. Reid has provided an invaluable asset for anyone who wishes to become more informed on America's health care system and would like to learn how it can be fixed. By undertaking a mission to find a cure for his ailing shoulder, and more importantly, health care in America, Reid travels across the world to find out what practices work in other developed nations as well as which ones don't. From these experiences, he develops a concise and clear database of information that allows the readers to develop their own opinion of the subject. Without doubt this is one of the most informational and interesting books I have read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted December 15, 2009

    Useful for understanding the general issues behind healthcare reform.

    Of course, the healthcare systems in the countries visited by Mr. Reid are much more complex than illustrated in this book; his anecdotes make this overview both interesting and readable.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 17, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Not Just for Policy Wonks - Very readable, Very informative

    T.R. Reid, true to his training as a reporter, provides an informative analysis of several of the world's most successful healthcare systems set against the search for solutions to a personal health problem (I'll let you read the details for yourself). Reid's personal encounters with the doctors and healthcare leaders of several nations provide a natural backdrop for his evaluation of the strengths and weaknesses of several foreign healthcare systems.

    The information on these systems is accurate and well documented. The search for the ideal healthcare system naturally proves unsuccessful, but the journey is informative. The reader cannot escape the comparisons to the U.S. healthcare system, which, of course, invite a certain degree of thought concerning U.S. efforts at healthcare reform.

    As a researcher and writer on the subject of foreign healthcare systems for TheCenter for Health Care Policy Research and Analysis, I appreciate the first-hand point of view in this book, and I agree with all but a couple of Mr. Reid's conclusions. Mr. Reid suggests that non-profit status for private insurance companies in many foreign nations is the reason for their success at cost containment. For another point of view on this, and other issues, I suggest two other books: "Handbook for Healthcare Reform: Foundation and Framework," and "Chronic Crisis." Both are available through Barnes and Noble, or through Acacia Publishing, Phoenix, AZ.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 11, 2009

    Mandatory reading for US citizens

    The debate surrounding health care reform in the US is one of the most confusing yet compelling issues affecting us all as citizens of the USA. T.R.Reid has outlined one of the most informative ways of helping me understand both our healthcare system, and the systems of other nations. After reading this book I am convinced we can make the necessary changes in the way we do business in this country around taking care of our citizens. This book should be mandatory for all high school students taking Health 101!!!!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 11, 2009

    great book

    Describes how other first world countries have approached health care delivery, their strengths and weaknesses. There is no perfect delivery system but all others are far cheaper, provide coverage for everyone and none ration critical care. If only our Congressional gurus would read this book it would open their eyes to the distortions and out right lies proffered by the special interests. On the other hand, maybe not.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted November 11, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Should be required reading for every member of congress and a must read for every American citizen who wants to fully understand why our system of health care is one of the lowest ranked in the developed world.

    T.R. Reid's book, The Healing Of America is a book about how other industrialized countries provide health care for ALL their people at a lower cost and with better results than the United States. His review of other countries health systems is based on first hand experience while living with his family in Japan and Britain and other world travels. He describes the different "models" in each country and explains in plain language, how each country provides health care, the results, costs, advantages and pitfalls. And, he does this in a simple, clear and entertaining way.

    As someone who lost his job this year, I have been thrust into the nightmare of trying to provide myself and family with health care insurance. Something is seriously wrong when in the United States of America, you lose your job, and need the help the most, you are burdened with astronomical health insurance cost. Why is it that my health insurance cost is higher than my mortgage? Everyone in America who wants to really understand why our health care system needs reform should read this book. Highly recommended!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 31, 2009

    What others have achieved in healthcare

    Reid does an excellent job of explaining what other industrialized countries have achieved in healthcare at much lower costs that we currently spend in the US. This should be required reading for all of our senators and representatives in Washington.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 26, 2009

    The Healing of America - Very Good Book

    I found this book to be very informative, interesting, and relative. The author did a very nice objective and comparative evaluation of various Helathcare plans in other nations while combining it with personal
    experiences and observations. I thought it was concise enough to be easy to read yet detailed enough to provide a thorough understanding of the topic.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 26, 2009

    Facts in the heat of the moment

    Reid has compiled and detailed health care delivery around the world. He explores how other countries have organized their delivery and insurance systems hoping to find the best of each one so that policy makers in America can benefit from cross-fertilization. I can only hope the guys and gals on capital hill will take the time to read this. OK, maybe their health care staffers will read this and relay the salient points. An easy and compelling read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 17, 2009

    Templates for health care that America should consider.

    Mr Reid has succeeded in writing a book that incorporates volumes of facts while being highly readable. It is as if a dry treatise were embedded in a novel, integrating facts into a fascinating story.

    The most important intent of the book is to inform Americans of the experiences of other countries in the health care arena. We are so insular and always seem to feel that we are at the pinnacle of everything. We need to be disabused of this fantasy and open our minds to the what we can learn from the rest of the world. We could emulate Taiwan and evaluate, select and implement the best parts of every plan on earth.

    As a technical geek, I was particularly interested in the French system of storing individual's medical history on a card with a memory chip. The elimination of paper records along with the staff and cabinets must certainly contribute to lower costs and much greater efficiency in health care delivery.

    All of the systems in different countries displayed benefits generally greater than ours and with problems generally less than ours. The many measurements of health results confirm that the systems benefits are not just theoretical.

    I appreciated Mr Reid's emphasis on the human side of health care as opposed to the cost side. In the US we hear far more about what we are being asked to pay than what the results are. As a cost related side note, we are spending about the same amount in Iraq as we would spend over ten years if any of the current reform bills in Congress are adopted.

    There is so much valuable information in this book that I cannot do it justice in a review. You should get and read this book. It will open your eyes and give you a new perspective.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 17, 2009

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted April 28, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 46 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 3