About Us

Ann McKay, R.N.C., John McGonigle, M.D. and Mark Brody, M.D. have devoted themselves to homeopathy and related alternative medical treatments. In keeping with the spirit of homeopathy's founder Samuel Hahnemann M.D., we utilize treatments that emphasize safety and the restoration of the sick to health.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Health Care Crisis

My two year old daughter Aviva is in the "I want" stage of development. "Daddy, I want raisins! I want Mommy! I want apple -- whole thing!" My wife and I do our best to get her to ask politely, but sometimes it's hard not to lose our cools. There are just times where she simply can't have what she wants, nor are we there to cater to her every whim. She doesn't understand this, nor can we easily explain such concepts to a two year old.

Our country is now going through an "I want" crisis of its own, and no authority has been there to tell us we can't have all we want. Politicians' re-elections have depended on them not saying no to any of the country's "I wants." As parents, my wife and I are totalitarians, so poor Aviva has to submit to our dictates. We are benevolent dictators, by and large, so there are boundaries that keep the family from descending into utter chaos, without too many of the excesses (I believe) of unlimited power. The lack of constraints on our country's financial system, our credit system, our manufacturing system, our health care system, and our transportation system however, has led to a bottomless pit of need. We now find ourselves with multiple crises on virtually all fronts as a result of the failure of checks and balances.

Our financial system is imploding, credit is frozen up, products are beset with safety problems, our health care system is pricing itself into a state of unaffordability, commercial agriculture has depleted our land and denutritionalized and toxified our food supply, and our dependency on fossil fuels has led to a global warming problem that is reaching emergency proportions. We want houses, we want credit, we want cheap stuff, we want cheap food and lots of it, we want unlimited health care access, we want our SUV's and low-mileage cars. And by and large, no one has said no to these wants. There have been a few, like Wendell Berry and Bill McKibben who have been warning for years about the dangers of disrespecting the balances in our ecosystem, but aside from these admonishing few, there have been little in the way of checks and balances on the systems that cater to our ever-expanding wants and desires.

It is sometimes equally sad and amusing to watch our presidential candidates argue about the merits of their respective health care plans. Both acknowledge that neither of their plans is perfect, although they both (naturally) claim that theirs is better than the other candidate's. Noone is willing to say that the Emperor is naked! It is not that it is politically incorrect, it's that we haven't been willing to break down our denial about this obvious fact. For the past 10 years the costs have health care have been rising at 3 or 4 times the rate of inflation. Clearly, this pattern can not go on forever. Since we have our heads in the sand about this fact, we have clearly decided to wait until the system becomes so bloated in cost that it is collapsing under its own weight. We'll deal with the problem then, I suppose.

While many of the innovations of modern medicine are indeed impressive, some are less so, and they are all costing us an incredible amount of money. Our conventional allopathic system is increasingly becoming so overweight that it's going to start having strokes and heart attacks. It's fast becoming moribund, at the very moment it's at it's greatest size and influence. This is a time when homeopathy is well poised to move to the forefront. Since nation-states can not cover everyone for every problem, the choice becomes to either not cover everyone (the United States' solution), to cover everyone, but limit the coverage (the European solution), or to find cheaper but effective solutions (India's solution). The U.S. and European solutions clearly have limited political viability, and as costs continue to rise, they become less feasible. Opposition to homeopathy is so strong (even within India), that further expansion of homeopathy as an affordable viable alternative is likely to occur only when the system is in a state of utter collapse.
Like the stubborn fool who keeps looking for his lost keys where the light is, even though he lost them over in the dark, homeopathy, with its astounding potential for cost savings, if more broadly applied, is likely to languish in a state of dark obscurity until the lights go out. Fortunately and unfortunately, this state of affairs does not appear to be all that far off in the future.