Tag Archives: health

Conversations on Health

Conversations on Health: How We Get There is a monthly podcast series about health care, health care systems and the connections we need to make them better. Through health professionals and patients – each podcast will explore a different aspect of health or health care. Or a different country’s health care system as it compares to ours in the US. As a veteran reporter – I want to know why so many Americans still don’t have access to the comprehensive health care so normal in other advanced countries. And if, after the disastrous response to COVID 19, the US and other nations are now prepared for another major public health crisis.

I hope you’ll enjoy the podcasts which will be quite wide-ranging. Look for new ones on the 3rd Tuesday of each month unless otherwise announced, And please, DO subscribe so you won’t miss any. Thank you so much!

The podcast is available as a video on YouTube

And also as an audio podcast on Podbean and the Podbean App, on the Apple Podcast app, on Google Podcasts and on other platforms.

Episode #1: A Conversation with Dr. David Marx, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic

Episode #2: When Writer Steve Fisher Nearly Died in Prague, CZ

Episode #3: Pam’s Healthcare Nightmare

Episode #4: A Conversation with Richard Saltman, PhD, Professor Emeritus of Health Policy and Management, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University, Atlanta, GA

Episode #5: The Continuation of A Conversation with Richard Saltman, PhD, Health Policy Expert


Episode #5: The Continuation of A Conversation with Richard Saltman, PhD, Health Policy Expert

Part 2: We continue to compare the US health care system with those of Sweden and other Nordic and European state-run systems. Does the US really have a mostly private system? Are countries already developing new, hybrid models as the cost of breakthrough medical procedures and designer drugs skyrockets? And can we really compare any single European country to our sprawling land of more than a hundred and 33 million people?

Episode #4: A Conversation with Richard Saltman, PhD, Health Policy Expert

Part 1: We’re delving into the mix of private insurers, doctor groups, regional hospital systems, Medicare, Medicaid, the Veterans Health Administration – plus a federal and state public health system- which together are considered the US health “system”. How does the US “system” compare to those in Europe and the Nordic countries? You may be surprised at what you hear.

Episode #3: Pam’s Healthcare Nightmare

Most of us have had some experience with the mish-mosh of health care in the US which substitutes for a real health system – the European kind you learned about in episodes 1 and 2. Both dealing with health care in the Czech Republic. But here in the United States – it’s not so simple. If you’ve had to navigate the maze of doctors, hospitals, health care alliances and insurance in the US – you probably have a horror story. Like my friend Pam Cookson.  Who lives in St. Augustine, Florida. Pam’s struggle to get a simple bladder infection treated – something millions of us have also done – is eye-opening. And sadly – likely to sound familiar to many of you.

Episode #2: When Writer Steve Fisher Nearly Died in Prague, CZ

Steve Fisher is a friend of mine who lives and works in the Czech Republic. A few years ago he got very sick and is very, VERY grateful for how well the Czech health system took care of him. It’s a very dramatic story.

Episode#1: A Conversation with Dr. David Marx, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic

I started with a typical European, mostly public health care system in the Czech Republic because I spend a lot of time there. You can compare it to your own experience in our very fragmented PRIVATE system in the US. Like all the European and Scandinavian countries and the United Kingdom – working Czechs and their employers pay a lot in taxes and insurance fees to support most of the overall health care system. EVERYONE has similar, solid coverage. To get an overview of how the system works – I sat down with an internationally known expert on health care – Dr. David Marx – in his office in Prague. He heads the Department of Public Health of the Third Faculty of Medicine – part of the renown Charles University Medical program.

Episode #6 will drop on Tuesday February 14, 2023.

You may have been following the recent nurses’ strikes against the UK state-run health care system as well as those here in New York City. Nurses are striking not just for more money but because of continued understaffing at hospitals and other care facilities. In Episode #6 you’ll hear from a veteran US nurse who has worked as both a staff nurse and a nursing supervisor in several major New York hospitals. She’s also been a school nurse and has worked in the public health system. Is there really a nursing crisis post pandemic? Are hospitals keeping up with demographic changes in the population and breakthroughs in treatment? And in her opinion – does the US health care system really work for Americans?

Another Opening of Another Show

cropped-SS-Blog-Short-Hair.jpgI don’t suppose I’m unique these days but I feel like I’m always re-inventing myself professionally. So here I go again — to paraphrase a President named Reagan whose 1980 presidential campaign was my political reporting trial-by-fire.

I’ve blogged before and eventually, when I get the technical stuff in hand, you’ll see a link to Global Perspectives as I so grandly called it.  Long, carefully crafted columns. Not really so global as it turned out.

I travel a fair amount and love exploring other cities, other landscapes, other countries, other cultures and above all — other people’s lives.

I’m a health and fitness nut.  A gym rat who ran 30 marathons and now runs only occasional 5ks.  On a 6 year old knee replacement. Yes – I learned a lot about the power of the mind and the frailty of the body as I ran my knee into the ground. Always sure I could will my body to do my bidding, injury or no, 14 hour work days or no. Sleep? Ha! A half hour of running at 5AM was worth more than a half hour more of sleep I figured. Especially when the time allotted for sleep averaged just 4 -5 hours a night!  Hey dummy — you can’t run marathons on so little sleep. Or on injuries. But I’m a control freak and I didn’t believe it.  Believe me, I do now.

So look for some stuff about health and working out here. And eating right of course. Nothing about cooking. Never had the time. But thankfully my husband cooks.  And we have a microwave. Or I’d probably live on salads and cold cereal.

And again – as soon as I get the hang of it – look for some videos, some photos, some infographics with audio — whatever I can do to make my point.  If I find news during my travels – I’ll post it here.  And probably a little here and there about the absurdities of life.  I’ll try to keep things reasonably short. And I don’t want to hear from grammarians.  It’s my voice. As I have always phrased my radio and TV newscasts and reports. Fragmented like me. I hope it’s the beginning of a beautiful and interesting relationship.