America ReFramed

The Invisible Patients

Season 06  Episode 5

Jessica Macleod, Ph.D., a nurse practitioner in family medicine, seeks to infuse some common-sense practices into the health care system. With her laptop satchel and stethoscope, Jessica travels from one homebound patient to another making old-fashioned house calls - she typically sees eight-to-ten patients, and drives on average 60 miles throughout southwestern Indiana and northwestern Kentucky.

Often, Jessica’s clients are under-resourced. Many face difficult circumstances and exist at the outer edges of our healthcare system - like Wink and Patty, an elderly couple dealing with chronic conditions while black-balled by their physician for failing a drug screening. Jessica’s work puts a laser focus on some of the most urgent healthcare issues facing the country, from the living conditions of the elderly poor and end of life care, to the soaring costs of hospitalization, complexity of insurance and overprescription of opiates.

Through Jessica’s story and those of her patients, THE INVISIBLE PATIENTS reveals the emotional and financial toll created by our current system, pulling back the curtain on a hidden population who cry out for human-centered solutions. The film challenges us to wrestle with healthcare policy, and asks how to care for all persons with dignity and respect.