Video: Michael Moore & Donna Smith: Still Sicko


“Sooner or later people are going to realize that decisions about whether one lives or dies should not be predicated on ‘How much money can I make off this?'” says Michael Moore, looking back at his film Sicko with Donna Smith of National Nurses United. They both note that it’s the health care workers who are leading the fight for a better system for all, even as those workers are under attack themselves.

To kick off our new series, The Nurses’ Station, Michael and Donna joined Laura in studio for a look back at Sicko and a conversation about what has changed since the film was made, and why it’s not enough.


  1. Ann Stanton on March 30, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    A year later and what has changed? Not much. My brother died 3/7/09 because of a heart rhythm problem and no insurance. He could not get the battery replaced in his defibrillator because he didn’t have insurance or enough money to pay in advance for it. He died 15 months after being in the hospital for 23-hour observation. My sister recently had to take an early retirement under SS at age 62 due to diabetes with numerous complications involving other organs and kidney problems. Continuing to work made her conditions worse with 5 hospitalizations in 2010. She had insurance through work but had problems trying to get insurance after she retired. We finally found a plan that had some limitations, e.g. 4 dr visits a year and no prescription coverage and she’s able to get that due to having a conversion policy through her group insurance from work. It’s based on low income but it’s something she can afford for now. Family helps as much as we can and have been doing so. My brother and sister were both denied Medicaid through PA. My brother was told he made too much as a pizza delivery driver because he also got tips. My sister was told she could only make about $430 a month in PA. Who can live on that? She could not qualify for PA Fair Care unless uninsured for 6 mos and the premium is higher and it has high deductibles. You see, nothing has changed. Where is healthcare reform?

  2. Rev Stephen Petrovich on March 30, 2011 at 2:57 pm

    After 10 yrs of illness from Sept 11 as a Responder Volunteer,I had to get home care paying $10.00 per hr 40 hours a week.My whole Comp Check is given for my care plus my family has to help me with the balance.With out insurance I can not even pay for some med’s I need I must cut them in half and take a half ever other day,not like I should 1 tab each day.Something must be done to help all people without insurance,for me I do not have that much longer my illness is getting worse thank God they pay for my Oxygen.I wish these insurance people could visit us who are ill and see first hand how we live.Thanks to Mike Moore and the Film Sicko! which I was to be apart of but could not travel,things may change!THANK YOU MR.MOORE SO VERY MUCH FOR CARING FOR US.If I only had the Health Care I needed right after 911 I really feel my health would not have declined as it has.I pray for all suffering and that soon, all will have coverage and treatment that is a right for all.
    God be with us!
    S.Petrovich Responder of WTC-911 Huron,Ohio.

  3. ANNETTE TERZIOTTI on March 30, 2011 at 7:45 pm

    The FDA needs to be put under control by the people of this country. It was supposed to be for our safety. They let pharmaceutical companies poison us and they allow poison in our food & drinking water. There are natural cures for everything. Proper diet can control many health issues. The drug industry took mt son. He is a crazy person now after Oxycontin. Many people are made sick from the drug industry. The sicker we get the more money they make.It is very corrupt. The medical industry is what I refer to as-The Death Industry Of America. is a web site started by a former drug dealer as she calls herself. Pharmaceutical sales person is what she was. Go to her website and see for yourself.

  4. Bernie Palmatier on March 30, 2011 at 9:09 pm

    The U.S. once was the greatest country on earth to live in; now it’s the greatest country to die in.
    I just returned from a trip to Las Vegas, Nevada, where I met quite a number of people from Canada. Without exception I asked each of them what they thought of their health care system. Without exception they all said they thought it was great. I stated: “But I’ve heard that you all come south of your border to the U.S. for care”. “Oh, if you don’t want to wait for some non life threatening procedure and you can pay or have other health insurance, yes; but there’s no need to.” One fellow shared that a friend of his had been diagnosed with cancer just a day or two prior to his departure for the states and he was already in treatment.
    I’m convinced that if every American would simply pick up the phone and randomly call five or ten people in Canada and ask the same question we could stop the demogogueing of the rightwing and people would realize why the Canadian people voted the founder of their health care system the “Man of the Century” for the 1900’s. Hey, phone rates are almost free these days — pick up the phone. Prove it for yourself; then get busy contacting your congressmen, senators, friends and relatives — before too many more people in this once greatest country in the world have to die from lack of medical attention.
    Now to call my local cable station and ask for Grit TV.

  5. Rita Walpole Ague on March 31, 2011 at 6:31 am

    So many of we the sheeple will be forever grateful to the California Nurses’ Association for the never to be forgotten logo: HEALTHCARE NOT WARFARE. One year of warfare pays for approx. ten years of healthcare for every person in the country – the only advanced country in the entire world not to offer healthcare as a human(e) right for all its citizens, just as they (and we) offer free public education to all.

    Time for we here in the U.S. of (greed and power) A.(ddiction) to take off the blinders, and reject karlroving spin, manipulation, distraction (i.e. healthcare for all is ‘socialism’, or, as a ‘good Christian said to me, as he threatened to shoot me, “You’re going to hell. This healthcare crap is all about abortion.”

    Fighting for justice (including healthcare) and peace is no easy job, in fact, it can be fraught with peril (Google: Colorado Springs Independent, Jan. 21, 2010, “No Peace or Justice”). But fight we must, Wisconsin style, in order to…UNDO THE COUP!!!_

  6. Marjorie Stuart on March 31, 2011 at 8:12 pm

    What can we do……
    In a democracy such as ours in the U.S., government authority is derived only from the consent of the governed.

    The social contract thus formed is the people giving up a measure of natural power in return for the protection of the government.

    Our government has broken this fundamental contract, by not protecting our health.

    It is up to us, the people, to take back our power and force the government to uphold their contractual agreement.

    This calls for caring, talking to friends and family, staying aware and supporting the entities who are working on making universal healthcare happen, and not giving up no matter what.

    Remember the thirteen colonies were a David against the Goliath of England in 1776.
    And remember most of us are transplants whose ancestors went against amazing odds to make a new life here.

    Sorry it’s hard, folks, but it is possible.

  7. Courtney in Houston on December 31, 2011 at 7:55 pm

    Glad for GritTV to host Donna Smith & Michael Moore perspective on health care reforms since SICKO movie. Thankful for DonnaS & Nat’l Nurses United persevering efforts towards equity & accessible health care. Thanks to OccupyWallStreet movement & those who challenge profit-making in our so-called healthcare system. Gratitude to HealthcareNOW & all the single payer advocates who sustain building a movement toward universal health care- expanded & improved Medicare for All. Get YOUR group to send YOU or a representative to the National Strategy Conference in Houston TX January 28-29, 2012. HOW to advance single payer during an election year. HOW to defend the safety net programs we’ve won (Medicare, Medicaid, CHIPS, Social Security) while pressing forward for the system change we need. HOW to increase single payer support & organizing in the SOUTH? & more. See website for conference info, or + sponsor an ad in the program booklet? Tabling & distribute materials? $$ support for scholarships to enable low-income activists to attend? Saludos. Happy NEW Year with hope in the power of the people!

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