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Is American Healthcare in a Bubble?

Over at, my colleague Alan Greene (who, with his wife Cheryl, runs the fantastic parenting and child resource site, writes an entry based upon a talk he gave at the second Health 2.0 conference in San Francisco this past week. (Health 2.0 is a conference that ostensibly seeks to help encourage the conversation amongst people seeking to help empower patients with their health care.)

Dr. Greene believes that change is coming in the American health care system, which is currently in a bubble, because the current system is simply unsustainable:

At one time, the bubble of the new economy and the more recent housing bubble looked to many like they would go up forever. The banking bubble grew in the marbled halls of century-old firms. But what looked so solid has quickly changed. There are signs that the healthcare bubble is already weakening. Healthcare costs already consume 16 percent of our GNP, and the percentage is accelerating at an unsustainable pace. Meanwhile, the number of Americans who don’t have access to their doctor on the day they need care has grown to 210 million.

Although the mental health system is in a different league when it comes to how it’s reimbursed and the costs associated with its treatment, it will be a part of any health care reform. And given how much the candidates are talking about health care reform, this seems like a timely prediction.

Health care will change, for better or worse. The choice we have is whether to become a part of that change, helping direct it, or simply stand back and hope for the best. Participatory Medicine forwards the notion that people — patients, providers and everyone else — working together as a team, will become the core of the future of health care. (This is what we regularly blog about over at

How this will trickle down into mental health care is evident even today. Patients want greater access and communication with their mental health professional, through email and social networking sites. They become educated on their concerns before ever stepping foot in a therapist’s office and join a support group to gain peer-support for their concerns. And in some cases, some patients even are comfortable sharing their entire medical history with the world.

This is the future of care in both health and mental health.

Read the full entry: A Glimpse of American Healthcare of the Future (My Talk at Health 2.0)

Is American Healthcare in a Bubble?

John M. Grohol, Psy.D.

Dr. John Grohol is the founder of Psych Central. He is a psychologist, author, researcher, and expert in mental health online, and has been writing about online behavior, mental health and psychology issues since 1995. Dr. Grohol has a Master's degree and doctorate in clinical psychology from Nova Southeastern University. Dr. Grohol sits on the editorial board of the journal Computers in Human Behavior and is a founding board member of the Society for Participatory Medicine. You can learn more about Dr. John Grohol here.

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APA Reference
Grohol, J. (2018). Is American Healthcare in a Bubble?. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 30, 2020, from
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Last updated: 8 Jul 2018 (Originally: 27 Oct 2008)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 Jul 2018
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