POV Magazine—Review: ‘Bending the Arc’

If only more people in power could take this medicine.

Excerpt taken from a review originally published in POV Magazine.

The right to health care—and, by implication, the right to life—is under the microscope again. Thanks to the unhealthy advice of Donald Trump, the Affordable Care Act is on the table again. It’s not on life support, though, since Dr. Death has opted to pull the plug. There are enormous precedents for saving lives by fixing a nation’s health care system and offering proper care to all, as the story of the compelling and timely documentary Bending the Arcshows with its depiction of small scale changes that inspired long term gains.

This powerful film profiles a group of heroes who took the call to see healthcare as a duty and service, rather than as a clinical enterprise. Bending the Arc is the story of Dr. Paul Farmer, Dr. Jim Yong Kim (now president of the World Bank), activist Ophelia Dahl, Todd McCormack, and investor Thomas White and their brave effort that began in the 1980s as they delivered life saving services to small communities in third world countries.

Bending the Arc gives a retrospective analysis of the team’s endeavour, which can and should inspire more action today. The good doctors, particularly Farmer, are hallmarks of youthful idealism as they go to Haiti and provide life-saving treatment to villagers in the small town of Cange. There the doctors and philanthropists treat patients with life-threatening diseases, including tuberculosis, with the generous financial support of White, who bankrolls the operation with his savings like a philanthropic living will. The results are astonishing as one sees the doctors revive patients whom much of the world wrote off as not worth saving.

Read full article here.