Popular Mechanics recently asked Dean Kamen, one of the most prolific inventors with a penchant for medical devices, what he thinks about the current healthcare debate. Kamen’s basic argument is that the “crisis” of American healthcare is an overblown concept. To that end he points to the reality of technological progress in medicine and the ability to cure diseases that had no treatment options only a short time ago. As such, Kamen warns against spending cuts that may delay progress and lead to even greater spending in the future.
A tidbit from the PM interview:
Our healthcare system has seen some of the greatest achievements of the human intellect since we started recording history: We’re developing incredible devices and implantables to improve the quantity and quality of people’s lives. We’re developing pharmaceuticals that alleviate the need for surgery and eliminate the volatile effects of diseases. We’re making the surgeries that are necessary ever less invasive. You can get a stent through your femoral artery all the way up into your heart and fix a blockage without surgery. I’d say, if we have a crisis, it’s the embarrassment of riches. Nobody wants to deal with the fact that we’re no longer in a world where you can simply give everybody all the healthcare that is available.
We can’t agree with Dean Kamen any more than that. There is a reason why most of Medgadget archives cover devices and technologies coming from the United States. Here we have a great healthcare system, equipped with the latest technologies, smart doctors and clean hospitals. It might be an inefficient system, not covering everyone, but it is a system that delivers unbelievable technologies to help patients day in and day out. There must be a reason why we rarely see anything interesting coming out of France, Greece, Spain, Italy, or most other European countries (Germany being the clear exception).
Read the entire interview at Popular Mechanics: Inventor Dean Kamen Says Healthcare Debate "Backward Looking"…