THE DOCTOR FIX: STATEMENT FROM THE CO-PRODUCER
My purpose in making this film is to open up conversations among physicians about how they can take charge of their destiny and participate in creating high-value healthcare. I strongly believe that we need to be leaders in shaping both how healthcare reform unfolds and the new healthcare system that will address the challenges faced today in an era of limited resources and escalating demand. I believe that we can build a win-win system; one where high-quality care is delivered at affordable prices, and where physicians are fairly compensated while experiencing the satisfaction and pride of professional accomplishment and contribution.
Why does this matter to me? Because when I look at today’s US healthcare system as a whole, I am disheartened at what I see. Uncoordinated care, underutilization of preventative measures, a focus on illness, and insufficient attention paid to patient safety both in and out of the hospital are just a few of the problems that are pervasive and entrenched in American healthcare today. Commonwealth Fund studies consistently puts US healthcare toward the bottom of the pack for outcomes such as longevity, efficiency, access, and safety, although we spend twice as much per capita on healthcare than any other country.
Our country desperately needs an affordable, high-quality healthcare system, and a healthier population. Many economists see these two goals as essential to determining the health of our economy and to the vigor of our society for years to come. The simultaneous demand for quality care, improved outcomes, and value is increasingly essential to the debate. The focus of healthcare reform (Affordable Care Act) includes such things as electronic medical records, data transparency with measurable outcomes, greater accountability, more effective coordination of healthcare, tireless attention to building evidence-based medical care processes that work, and greater value for healthcare dollars spent. These, plus a relentless focus on prevention and putting the patient front and center, are guiding healthcare in a new direction.
I am also making this film for my fellow physicians, whose voices haven’t been sufficiently heard in all the din of healthcare reform in the last few years. We bemoan “what is happening to American healthcare” and the resulting impact on how we “have to” practice medicine. We can do better than that. We are a profession full of extremely well-educated, competent professionals, who can do remarkable things to heal and cure patients. Shame on us if we don’t become part of the solution to the challenges facing healthcare rather than seeing ourselves as victims. This film is a call to action. I hope the stories we share in the documentary inspire physicians and medical students alike to embrace this most noble profession amidst the rapidly changing environment in which they practice. I believe that it is precisely because there is so much change in the air that this is truly a great time to be a physician.
– Jeffrey Weisz, MD, Co-Producer