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Exclusive Clip: 'Escape Fire' Documentary Details Perverse Economic Incentives That Drive American Healthcare

Thompson on Hollywood By Sophia Savage | Thompson on Hollywood October 3, 2012 at 12:01PM

"Escape Fire: The Fight to Rescue American Healthcare" is one of those documentaries that makes you angry, but for the same reasons that make it essential viewing for anyone living in this country. The film, directed by Susan Froemke and Matthew Heineman and nominated for the documentary Grand Jury Prize at Sundance, arrives in theaters and on VOD and iTunes October 5. Director Heineman introduces our exclusive clip below:
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Escape Fire

"Escape Fire: The Fight to Rescue American Healthcare" is one of those documentaries that makes you angry, but for the same reasons that make it essential viewing for anyone living in this country. The film, directed by Susan Froemke and Matthew Heineman and nominated for the documentary Grand Jury Prize at Sundance, arrives in theaters and on VOD and iTunes October 5. Director Heineman introduces our exclusive clip below:

"In America, you’re twice as likely to get your knee replaced as you are in other Western countries. You’re two or three times as likely to get a heart catheterization or have a stent put in your coronaries. We’ve set up a reimbursement system that often pushes physicians and hospitals into doing more. It doesn’t reward doctors for doing a better job. It doesn’t reward them for keeping their patients healthy. It rewards them for delivering more care. And driven by these perverse economic incentives, doctors are doing a lot of procedures to people that they don’t need and, in fact, may cause harm. In this clip, we see Yvonne, a victim of overtreatment and a poignant example that more isn't always better."

This article is related to: ESCAPE FIRE: The Fight to Rescue American Healthcare, Clip, Documentary, Documentaries


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.