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Coast to Coast - 2022-02-08 - Dr. John Abramson - Broken Health Care System

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Tuesday - February 8 2022

George Noory

Dr. John Abramson

A family physician for 22 years, Dr. John Abramson serves on the faculty at Harvard Medical School. In the first half, he discussed the tangled web of moneyed interests at the heart of the US healthcare system and how Big Pharma relentlessly pursues profits for its shareholders. While he believes in free markets, he noted that certain successful drugs allow pharmaceutical companies to hold a monopoly because they control the patent. Because of this, working people can be extorted over prescription prices, he continued. In the US, the healthcare industry and particularly Big Pharma, is very unregulated compared to other countries. "We've got to put the guardrails back on this industry," he advised.

One step toward regulation would be to instigate a "health technology assessment" made by an independent body, which analyzes new drugs and compares them to older ones, and recommends which ones are most effective or worth the price being charged. Abramson pointed out that new drugs that are often pushed on patients are staggeringly expensive, whereas older (and cheaper) formulations may work just as well. While he's highly critical of the drug companies in general, he thinks they got it right in developing the COVID vaccines on short notice when we faced an unprecedented threat. However, he added, "we didn't make sure the drug companies would do a reasonable job of vaccinating the poorer countries," which may lead to further virus variants that breed in those locations.


This was an interesting interview. Right as the host was about to bring on this guest, Dr. John Abramson, the guest's entire internet and phone system went out. I guess it could just be a coincidence...

And I know that this is just a coincidence, but my ISP, presumably, has just throttled my upload speeds down to 60kbps. Which is insane - I had faster uploads back in the late 1990s. This just happened and I tried a speed test, which said I had 7mbps upload. But uploaded this file to test it to my FTP/seedbox and also to and both were heavily throttled.

I rebooted and it seems to be okay again, but not sure what the throttling issue was all about.

Line noise can cause the modem to lose the handshake with the other end, which triggers a connection renegotiation at lower bandwidths. It's built into the protocols. If it keeps happening, have tech support do a line noise test.

So true! I am glad that I don't need to do port forwarding with my FTP and all of that, because I don't really know how to do that kind of stuff at the moment. I used to have to do that years ago. But normally on this new laptop I get really good upload (and download) speeds. Thankfully ISPs don't often throttle BitTorrent etc anymore just because there are so many people online using streaming multimedia like YouTube and Netflix, that we all need unlimited bandwidth basically. Of course, users like Ac1dAngel might have broken the internet...