Jon Stewart, Healthcare Reform, and Lyme Disease

Commentary By Guest Author Jessica Bernstein, Psy.D.

 Who knew that healthcare reform was still such a hot issue?

Everybody’s talking about the recent cover article of Time Magazine discussing the high costs of healthcare: “Bitter Pill” by Steven Brill.


Time cover Jon Stewart (The Daily Show) was so excited by the article that he exclaimed, “I don’t think I’ve ever said this before. Go out and get Time Magazine….It’s unbelievable.”

Watch Steven Brill on The Daily Show

In the impassioned interview, Steven Brill, author of the Time article, explained to Stewart how it’s like we live in an “alternate universe” with 2 economies. There’s the economy that all of us live in, where we’ve been losing money the last 5 or 6 years. Then there’s a little island – the healthcare economy – which just keeps making more and more money by taking it from all of us.
Many of us were disappointed with ObamaCare because it barely scratches the surface. Yet we also seem to have a collective sense of helplessness around the healthcare issue.


Lyme disease may come to be known as the illness that exemplifies the “all profit, no care” attitude of HMOs. Contrary to popular belief, Lyme disease is not just on the East coast. It’s a worldwide epidemic. According to the CDC, rates of Lyme far surpass rates of AIDS in this country.

We’re all at risk for this deadly disease.

HMOs are fighting tooth and nail to prevent this raging epidemic from becoming public due to fears about it becoming the next costly AIDS epidemic. Countless people with Lyme are being misdiagnosed with Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, ALS, MS, arthritis, depression, bipolar disorder, etc. Even when patients do get properly diagnosed, they can only receive 2 to 8 weeks of antibiotics.

HMOs refuse to treat people with chronic Lyme. As a result, patients are suffering and dying from debilitating neurological problems and many other physical symptoms.

maydayrally 037The Lyme community has decided to fight back. They are holding a worldwide protest this May. If you’ve ever had a gripe with an HMO, join them in the struggle.  Lyme is not just an illness. It’s a movement. It’s time to reform healthcare. Come stand with them on May 10 and 11th.

To see how you’re at risk for Lyme watch:  Under Our Skin Extended Trailer

For more information about the Lyme epidemic: National Lyme Headquaters

Find a Lyme protest near you: Worldwide Lyme Protest


Jessica Bernstein, Psy.D. is a psychologist with Lyme disease and Type 1 diabetes who has a private practice in Oakland, CA specializing in chronic illness. She is producing a documentary film about illness and suffering:  Blood and Honey


  1. Lyme Disease is becoming an epidemic across the country at an alarming rate; it’s currently the sixth fastest growing notifiable disease in the U.S.

    As Dr. Bernstein accurately states, our healthcare system is beyond broken in recognizing and in treating tick-borne illnesses, and those affected are too often invalidated by traditional physicians, health care departments, and organizations who have a heavy (and corrupt) influence on their current and future care.

    Kudos for the attention brought to this very important issue here.

  2. Semisweetgirl says:

    I still firmly believe this will only get worse with the gov’t handling things, allowing open competition across state lines would drive costs down. Of course that is why they fight it so vehemently.

  3. Michael V says:

    Sick people are hostages, they’re not paying for medical care, they’re paying a ransom. This is not a free or fair market, and medical care should not equal profiteering.