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Monday, May 7, 2012

Health Care & Public Policy Books Worth Reading

Having served as a health care and public policy book reviewer for the independent New York Journal of Books, I thought I would share some of the "good reads," with you as NYJB is closing its site.
My latest review, "Breasts, A Natural and Unnatural History," by Florence Williams is featured on the banner page for the site. It is a historical, scientific, and anthropological review of breasts, sociologically, scientifically, and as a bell weather for toxins in our society. Florence Williams will be in Seattle this month reading from her book.
The best book I have read about the long term problems in United States health care delivery and what the 2010 reforms may mean is "The Battle Over Health Care, What Obama's Reforms Mean," by Rosemary Gibson and Janardan Prasad Singh. Singh is an economist with the World Bank and Gibson is formerly with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, so the book is a nonpartisan review.
Another health care book I highly recommend was written by, Jonathan Wolff, Director of Philosophy, Justice, and Health at University College in London, is "The Human Right To Health," an Amnesty International Global Ethics Series, which explores global health and some of the perversions that happen because of self interest and misguided efforts of public/nonprofit entities.
Health Professionals and Trust: The Cure for Health Care Law and Policy, by Mark Henaghan, a New Zealand Professor shines the light on how government rules and their administration can interfere with patient safety, among other health care conundrums.
El Narco, by Ion Grillo lays bare the morass of the U.S. financed war-on-drugs and is one heck-of-a-ride. Grillo traveled throughout North America, Central America, and South America to research this book.
And finally, Robert Pelton's, "Licensed to Kill, Hired Guns in the War on Terror," exposes how war and insurgency is financed globally and is highly profitable to a select few.
Here is a nod to these thought provoking writers in a time of national attention deficit.
Thanks for reading my column and more importantly, thanks for reading books. To those of us who don't want to surrender our humanity to the "Snookies" of the world this is the healthpolicymaven encouraging you to buy books which raise our consciousness, not dull it