Exploring Human Potential

CODE BLUE: Sequel to The Social Transformation of American Medicine

Posted on | November 22, 2019 | Comments Off on CODE BLUE: Sequel to The Social Transformation of American Medicine


“Code Blue should be in every college Public Health and Health Policy syllabus in 2020!”

In the preface to his 1984 Pulitzer Prize winning book, “The Social Transformation of Medicine”, Princeton sociology professor Paul Starr states, “History does not provide any answers about what should be done… My hope is that this historical analysis may help to illuminate our present predicament even for people of diverse sympathies. I have sought to trace not only the origins of the institutions and policies that are with us today but also the fate of those that failed or were defeated or stunted in their development. I would not be sorry if these analyses of roads not taking serve as a reminder that the past had other possibilities and so do we today.”

Thirty-five years later, medical historian and health economist Mike Magee retraces the same path carrying it into the present and providing an invaluable sequel to Starr’s landmark text. In his acclaimed and comprehensive book, “Code Blue: Inside the Medical Industrial Complex”, Magee not only brings us up-to-date, but also takes us inside a conspiratorial and collusive network of health related corporations and associations committed to profitability over care. As the Kirkus starred review noted, he also  “suggests multiple sensible reforms in the realms of medical education, clinical research, publication of medical trials, marketing by pharmaceutical companies, and politically driven interactions within the Medical Industrial Complex.”

Paul Starr’s book changed the way students and professors looked at American health care, questioning whether it was “the best health care in the world.” Mike Magee not only picks up the trail and carries it into the present, but also explains and illustrates how we created the least efficient and effective health care system in the world, and (most importantly) what we should do about it now. Code Blue deserves a prominent location in the modern interdisciplinary college curriculum, and Mike Magee deserves a prominent position on the college speakers’ circuit.


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