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CANCER AND PUBLIC HEALTH

 

Many of us were shocked to read in the LA Times on 8/25/16,  that “Cancer surpasses heart disease as the leading cause of death in California and 21 other states”. The article points out that the cancer epidemic has been steadily growing for decades.   What is being done to stop or prevent this epidemic?  Is the Government doing anything to protect the Public Health? Public Health is the "science of protecting and improving the health of communities through…disease and injury prevention….” (www.cdcfoundation.org). Tragically the US Government spends only 3% of its health budget on Public Health. That is only 3% for prevention and 97% for treatment. Billions go to profits for Insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, hospitals and health professionals.  Most of this money is spent on treatment of disease, not for prevention of disease.

The massive profits of Insurance Companies and the health care industry give them vast political power.  Wall Street rises and falls with the profits of drug companies.  “The political system is sensitive only to the needs of the wealthy- something that is arguably true of the US Congress...”   (Scientific American September 2016).   

Treating disease makes money, preventing disease does not. It is hard to see how a profit driven society can  do anything other than profit from the sickness and disease of its people.  

Dr. Nayvin Gordon (Family Physician in California for 40 years)
8/25/16
gordonnayvin@yahoo.com

 

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We Can Change the World: The Real Meaning of Everyday Life by Dave Stratman

The People as Enemy: The Leaders' Hidden Agenda in World War II by John Spritzler