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Whistleblower Dr. Steven Nissen on "Escape Fire: The Fight to Rescue American Health Care"

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Published on Jan 23, 2012

democracynow.org - As the Republican presidential candidates propose to dismantle President Obama's 2010 healthcare reform package, we speak to Dr. Steven Nissen, one of the nation's leading cardiologists. His research into Vioxx and Avandia led to severe restrictions by the Food and Drug Administration, reducing the use of both drugs. Nissen is profiled in the documentary, "Escape Fire: The Fight to Rescue American Health Care," which is being featured this year at the Sundance Film Festival. The film tackles the powerful forces behind the battle over heathcare costs and access. "Healthcare has become such a huge business that the forces that don't want change — the insurance industry, the hospital industry, even physician professional societies have so aligned to keep the system as it is, that it's very hard to overcome that," said Dr. Nissen, who chairs the Department of Cardiovascular Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic. "My fear in this election, because of the Citizens United ruling, is massive amounts of money from people with a huge stake in making a profit from healthcare are going to influence the electorate with just an amazing amount of money.

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