Three Identical Strangers as Metaphor

I laughed out loud, when viewing the documentary Three Identical Strangers this weekend, when one of the triplets explained how it was possible for an uninsured triplet to obtain a needed appendectomy by impersonating another triplet who had health insurance.

Of course, we are all inured by now to having to provide photo identification at the start of the clinical encounter, so we have some sense of the desperation of people who attempt to use the health insurance of others. Good thing for the triplets involved that the statute of limitations for the  crime of medical identity theft or fraud has run.

A mostly unspoken sub-text of the documentary is how class shaped their life chances. We get a whiff of it when David Kellman (working class triplet) recounts how he couldn't believe that Bobby Shafran (well off triplet) drove a beat up old Volvo to college, despite having a prominent physician for a father.

But the need for health insurance fraud should have made us all sit up and take notice. 


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