Have you ever planned a vacation only to have things not work out as you’d intended? In our journey to good health, we all got on a train built and run by pharmaceutical companies – this train was supposed to take us to destinations such as “better health,” “cure,” and “well-being.” While we may have gotten close to some of these places, we never arrived. It’s time to change our travel agent and take a new direction.

What you are going to read in the next few pages may seem negative. It is hard to present the pertinent information in this chapter and give it a favorable spin. However, in order to move forward we need to take a close look at where we are today and examine why it is not a very good place to be. We will look back at this part of our journey and examine how and why we have gotten into this mess.

Some may say that the focus on profits rather than patient care became an addiction for many in the pharmaceutical industry. Like the ill wind of a tornado, this wrong emphasis twisted physicians and patients alike in the storm’s destructive path. I am going to call your attention to what has happened to millions of Americans caught in this health care storm.

It has taken us almost three decades to get to this part of our journey; we are here, in part, because most of us were raised to put our trust in health care providers. As we travel in our cars on vacation, we may find that there are long stretches of road that are desolate, but we know that we will reach the perfect location that we have been dreaming about at the other end.  Regarding health care, we may look back at our journey to better health and see some parts as desolate. We have been in health care desolation, and we are just now emerging on the other side.

For every failure, there’s an alternative course of action. You just have to find it. When you come to a roadblock, take a detour.
Mary Kay Ash

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