Marilyn Perry: ‘Re the Tom Friedman column yesterday, I work in clinical research at a top level university. Recently we had an opening for an entry level lab technician. We advertised for a student completing their second year of college majoring in biology or chemistry. This position is very flexible enabling the person to gain valuable experience while finishing school. Within a week, we had 30 applications and all but 1 were foreign students – all pre-med, all with 3.8-4.2 GPA’s. Where are the American students you ask? Well, I called the professor whom our top choice cited as a reference and was surprised to find out the majority of pre-med students in the top 10% are NOT American students.’

☞ Is it possible that after decades of wealthy foreigners’ coming here for the best medical treatment, the flow of commerce may begin to reverse? It will be a long time before we go abroad for higher quality; but we seem already to have begun going abroad for lower cost.


You may have seen this on ’60 Minutes’:

Bumrungrad Hospital, a luxurious place that claims to have more foreign patients than any other hospital in the world. It’s like a United Nations of patients here, and they’re cared for by more than 500 doctors, most with international training.

Bumrungrad’s not the only foreign hospital Americans are going to, either. But it sounds pretty good to me – like a five-star hotel with registered nurses instead of orderlies – and it saved one American $88,000 on the cost of a quintuple by-pass . . . $12,000 instead of an estimated $100,000.

One would think long and hard before undergoing surgery far from home (or close to home, for that matter). But this just makes the point that the world is ‘flattening,’ in Tim Friedman’s phrase, and that binge drinking alone may not assure today’s college kids a bright future.

(But kids! Don’t let this drive you to drink! You can make a bright future! Stay in school!)


Comments are closed.