Dr. Don Berwick draws a parallel between the Mann Gulch fire and the current health care system. In his essay, he relates the system of healthcare and Medicare to the resilient smokejumpers. His essay gives insights on the American health care and enlightens several flaws. He provides first-hand information on the state of health care due to his experience during her wife’s illness. His contribution is a vital source of information that should be considered to change the system of health care. He equates the system to the fire which seemed harmless at first, but later on led to deaths of 16. It enhances efforts to reform healthcare, by starting a fire around ourselves, ‘the first escape fire’.
According to Don, United states spends almost 300 billion dollars on drugs alone. This is even more than the world’s expenditure on pharmaceuticals. However, he noted that, despite heavy investments on drugs, America still lags behind in healthcare. In his experience with Ann, he observed how medication errors were almost normal, discontinuity of medication and follow up by doctors. Despite consistent hospitalization, Ann could not walk promptly. His experience affirms that, Medicare has become biased. He estimates spending15000dollars on drugs alone, yet only a quarter of the drugs were relevant to her. He opines that, medication should not be an assumption. Doctors and practitioners dwelled on assuming that certain reliefs were accrued by certain drugs yet it was unrealistic.
The answer to our healthcare is within us, just like Wag Dodge provided a quick solution on the onset of impending danger. Dr. Berwick equates our healthcare situation to that of smokejumpers. Root cause of healthcare should be found to eliminate this problem. The government is spending too much yet the healthcare is unaffordable, biased and no longer oriented to provide best services. He recommends preconditions and designs to enhance accessibility, interaction and credibility of our healthcare as some of the ‘escape fire’.