WHO CARES: Chronic Illness in America
WHO CARES: Chronic Illness in America

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Jim Sykes

John Hockenberry, as usual, made the issues very clear. I hope this program will be followed by one discussing real solutions. When I ran for governor in 1990, I made health care central to my platform, prior to the time it was a hot national issue. I received many calls from people in tears, being forced to spend down their savings, contemplating a divorce to meet regulations, unable to get long-term help.

The situation has only gotten worse. I believe we need to take the health care system out of the hands of insurance companies that decide who they will insure. We need one standard insurance form, Canadian-style universal access and an emphasis on prevention. Some of the two-fifths of the national budget that goes to military expenses (old and new) can be re-allocated. Employees and employers can contribute. There is no difference in the need for public health from the need for fire and police protection.

When I lived in Sweden in the mid 70's I felt sick and couldn't decide whether I REALLY needed to see a doctor. My Swedish friends said, "If we're sick we see a doctor. What else is there to think about?" We can accomplish the goal of universal access only with constant press exposure and people becoming politically active--advocating for the future of their own families.

Zoe Albright, Stroke
Betty Bennett, Kidney Disease
Roxanne Bedford-Curbow, Seizures
Valerie Brekke, Fibromyalgia
Lily Casura, Chronic Fatigue
Billie Davis, Peripheral Neuropathy
Penny Day, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
Julia DeJesus, Seizure Disorder
MS Patient, Fairfax, VA
Charisse Farmer, Hydrocephalus
Katherine Fielder, Chronic Pain
Zoe Francis, Juvenile Diabetes
James Hines, Hemochromatosis
William Holford, Emphysema
Nancy K, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Patricia Lawson, Natural Rubber Latex Allergy
James Locke, Crohn's Disease
Gary Maslow, various
Kathy Matthews, Parkinson's
Andrea Meyer, MS
Gina Owens, Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome
Alicia Salas, Chronic Pain
Allison Scott, Chronic Pain
Deborah Serrano, Stroke
Becky Shively, Phenylketonuria
Jennifer Smallin, Type I Diabetes
Joanna Southerland, Diabetes
Alina Valdes, Cystic Fibrosis
Elizabeth Wertz, Seizures

Jose Pedro Greer, Physician
W.F. Nagle, Physician
Ronda Riebman, Exercise
Cathleen Schilling, Case Manager
Jim Sykes

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