The Cleveland International Film Festival promotes artistically and culturally significant film arts through education and exhibition to enrich the life of the community.
April 09, 2018 | posted by Lara Klaber in Filmmakers
If you’ve had a positive experience in the healthcare system of the United States, you’re one of the lucky ones. Medical errors rank as the third leading cause of death in the United States, just behind heart disease and cancer. Director Mike Eisenberg talks with The Daily about his film “To Err is Human,” an awareness-driven and hopeful documentary about an industry in crisis.
Q: How does it feel to be making the world premiere of your film to “Err is Human” at the Cleveland International Film Festival?
A: We are thrilled to premier in Cleveland. I spent 7 years in Ohio, so it’s a homecoming of sorts. If Ohio is the America’s heartland, Cleveland is the heartland of healthcare. Some of the best in the world come here to learn and practice medicine, but even the best make mistakes, so there’s no better place to launch the film.
Q. What is the motive behind this documentary?
A. There is no question that we are all at risk of these preventable errors in medicine. This documentary is not designed to scare you. Once we catch up with the current state of healthcare, “To Err Is Human” turns its focus on the hopeful story of one family’s transition into an empowered voice for patients, and showcases real-world efforts already underway to improve the care we all receive. The film provides every viewer with actual takeaways to bring into their own healthcare experience.
Q. What can we do about making a change in our system or in the quality of our healthcare?
A. Don’t leave it up to somebody else. For too long we have assumed the healthcare system will fix itself. While some are trying, they can’t do it alone. There is so much we can do as patients, from keeping tabs on how our clinicians wash their hands to bringing/being an advocate for people at the doctor’s office. It is up to us to show the healthcare system that we care.
Q. What do you hope CIFF audiences to learn from this film?
A. I want the audience to feel empowered with knowledge to protect themselves when the healthcare system does not. The audience will leave the theater with real talking points to share with family and friends, or to use themselves next time they receive care. You will know what to look for next time you are in a hospital and how to know beforehand whether that hospital is safe or not.
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