September 11, 2012

Advance Screening of Sundance Film “ESCAPE FIRE: The Fight to Rescue American Healthcare” slated at the Boonshoft School of Medicine Sept. 19

Documentary and discussion about U.S. health care open to the public

Man with sign: Health Care can't waitDAYTON—Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine is one of 50 medical schools selected to host an advance screening of the Sundance film “ESCAPE FIRE: The Fight to Rescue American Healthcare.” The screening will be on Wednesday, Sept. 19, at 7 p.m., in the Gandhi Auditorium in White Hall on the WSU campus.

The event, which is hosted by the WSU Boonshoft School of Medicine Physician Leadership Development Program, the WSU Chapter of the American Medical Association, the WSU chapter of the American Medical Student Association and the Military Medical Interest Group, is free and open to the public. Free parking is available in lots 14, 15, 16 and 17 near White Hall after 6 p.m. The film, which is 99 minutes long, will be followed by a facilitated discussion. 

“As a medical student in Dayton, I’m incredibly excited to see ESCAPE FIRE,” said Lakshman Swamy, a fourth-year medical student in the Physician Leadership Development Program. “The movie describes so much of what we experience every day in the hospital. More than anything else, the film gives us hope that there is a way out of the worsening cost and quality crisis in health care and a way to be the doctors we want to be.”

The film tackles the issue of rising health care costs. Within 10 years, U.S. health care costs are projected to reach $4.2 trillion annually, roughly 20 percent of U.S. gross domestic product. Americans spend $300 billion a year on pharmaceutical drugs, which is almost as much as the rest of the world combined.

The film directors, Matthew Heineman and Susan Froemke, have woven dramatic personal interviews of patients and physicians with stories of leaders battling to transform health care at the highest levels of medicine, industry, government and the U.S. military.

“After decades of resistance, a movement to bring innovative high-touch, low-cost methods of prevention and healing into our high-tech, costly system is finally gaining ground,” Heineman said. “ECAPE FIRE is about finding a way out. It’s about saving the health of a nation.”

Heineman and Froemke wanted to show that Americans can empower themselves to be healthier, even before they become ill. They filmed “ESCAPE FIRE” to address what could be done to create an attainable health care solution.

“Recognizing the challenges faced by patients and caregivers alike is the first step,” said Zach Il’Giovine, a second-year medical student and a student government class representative. “Not only should doctors and medical students be proactive about this, but nurses, administrators and others involved in the medical system should be concerned.”

The film will be in theaters and on iTunes on Oct. 5. To learn more about the film, view the website and the trailer. You may also visit the Facebook event page. Click on University Tour, and scroll down to Wright State University to join the conversation.