Booster Shots

Oddities, musings and news from the health world

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A man and his family wait, and hope, as senators consider the options

December 23, 2009 |  1:21 pm

Sometimes lost amid the play-by-play of healthcare reform are both the individual stories -- and the greater context.

Tucker In today's Los Angeles Times, reporters Faye Fiore and Janet Hook write of Virginia resident Parks Johnson, 34, who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder 10 years earlier:

"The low point of his troubled life wasn't the year he learned he had a mood disorder, inherited from his mother; doctors found the right combination of antipsychotic drugs to keep him sane. The low point came six years later, when the health insurance industry refused to cover him anymore because he was too sick."

Read the story, "Sick, Without a Safety Net," here. And learn more about bipolar disorder in this booklet from the National Institute of Mental Health.

As for the play-by-play coverage, there's today's news story, "Senate Healthcare Bill May Be Hard to Reconcile With House's."

But then there's this history of health reform efforts in the U.S., presented as an interactive timeline from the Kaiser Family Foundation. More on the basics of healthcare reform can be found on the site as well.

-- Tami Dennis

Photo: Parks Johnson struggles to get the medications that will keep his condition in check.

Credit: Los Angeles Times