Ep. 08. Philosophy, public utility, and why healthcare is much easier to save than we think

How do we define Healthcare? Is it defined as a set of moral imperatives that each person operating in a symbiotic system prescribes to in order to enable the care-taking of individuals in need of caring? Or is it more of a web of self-interested parties working to maximize their economic slice of the pie on the back of one of the most inelastic services there is? Maybe somewhere in between.

Regardless, I think it’s easy to agree that something or many things are not right in our healthcare system. Patients going bankrupt over bills, insurers denying lifesaving treatments, people rationing insulin, the highest spending with the worst outcomes compared to all peer nations.

Two questions are always worth asking. Why have we come to this? And what should we do about it?

To help answer those questions, today I am joined by Dr. John Silver.

Dr. Silver received his Associate degree in nursing in 1984 from Palm Beach Community College, his BSN from Florida Atlantic University (FAU) in 1998 and his master’s degree from FAU in 2000. He earned the Public Intellectual Ph.D. in Comparative Studies from FAU in 2010.

Dr. Silver started in healthcare in 1974 and became a Respiratory Therapist in 1978. After receiving his ADN nursing degree in 1984, he worked extensively in critical care, including medical and surgical ICU’s, trauma units, burn units, and neurological ICU’s. He spent the last 8 years of practice in emergency rooms while attaining his degrees, and then transitioned to academia.

Dr. Silver writes and speaks about political issues in nursing and healthcare. He has presented at multidisciplinary conferences both nationally and internationally on health policy, the restructuring of healthcare systems using the Public Utility Model, and the role of nursing in that process. He has also spoken to a variety of nurse practitioner groups on political tactics for prescriptive authority and independent practice. In 2004, he led Spectrum’s international on-line chat prior to the election. He also studied nursing theory, nursing leadership and has a particular interest in the political fracturing of nursing. In 2013, he published his book on political empowerment “just a union…of nurses.”




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