November 4, 2008


On the day of 2008 Presidential Election there's only really one thing to say....

Your future and your childrens' future depend on it.

October 29, 2008

MSNBC & National Geographic Magazine feature "The Sandwich Generation"

TEM's documentary The Sandwich Generation continues to gain recognition!

The film, which chronicles filmmakers Julie Winokur and Ed Kashi as they struggle to care for Winokur's 82-year-old father, is featured in the November 2008 edition of National Geographic Magazine. In a four-page Photo Journal spread titled Living With Herbie, Julie's husband Ed Kashi (also a longtime National Geographic photographer) provides an intimate look at what it was like for his family to care for his dementia-stricken father-in-law.
__________________________________________________________________ currently features the second-half of The Sandwich Generation in the series Losing Herbie: Dad's slide into dementia. TEM's Executive Director Julie Winokur is also quoted in the companion article Alzheimer's offspring confront their own risk.

Watch: Losing Herbie: Dad's slide into dementia

Read: Alzehimer's offspring confront their own risk

October 7, 2008

If America gets UNIVERSAL healthcare...we better make sure we get more primary care doctors, too.

Universal healthcare is the magic key that could unlock many doctor offices' doors that currently remain shut and locked to most of the nation's uninsured population....but could universal healthcare also unlock a sort of healthcare "Pandora's Box"? A box that, when opened, creates a shortage of primary care physicians, longer wait times, and a reliance on emergency rooms for routine medical care?

According to two recent Boston Globe articles, Massachusetts, the first state to mandate health insurance in 2006, not only has a chronic primary doctor shortage but also has a wait time as long as 100 days just to see a primary care doctor. In its annual survey of physicians, the Massachusetts Medical Society found that among 100 internists the average wait time for an appointment for a new patient was 50 days, with some reporting waits up to 100 days. As a result, thousands of newly insured Bay State residents are relying on emergency rooms for routine medical care, which the Globe describes as "an expensive habit that drives up healthcare costs and thwarts a major goal of the state's first-in-the nation health insurance law."

So if the entire state of Massachusetts is finally insured, why are its residents STILL having problems receiving medical treatment? Plain and simple: there just are not enough primary care physicians to see the 439,000 newly insured patients.

A national primary care shortage has been looming for several years as doctors retire or leave the specialty and fewer doctors are entering the field. The Massachusetts Medical Society found that fewer primary care doctors are taking on new patients, and 42 percent of internists surveyed have closed their practices to them, compared with 33 percent in 2004. According to a survey published this month in the Journal of American Medical Association, just 2 percent of students graduating from medical school plan to practice primary care. Additionally, physicians are choosing to practice other fields since primary care requires long, unpredictable hours and pays less than most other medical specialities.

With all this said, does this mean then if the United States has a universal health plan that the nation will face the same shortage of primary care physicians and increase in wait time that Massachusetts is currently facing? Frankly, I think this a very likely possibility....BUT, in the same way that Massachusetts was the first state to mandate healthcare in the U.S., it is also the first state to deal with these post-mandate problems and therefore the first to work through them and find reliable solutions. For example, the state's law includes $1.5 million this year to help the University of Massachusetts Medical School expand its class size and to waive tuition and fees for students who agree to work as primary care doctors in Massachusetts for four years after they finish training. Massachusetts is also spending $1.7 million this year to repay medical school loans of doctors who agree to work in community health centers, and at least $500,000 to pay off debt for doctors who agree to work in primary care in underserved areas for at least two years....and considering that the average medical school student graduates with about $150,000 in debt, this $500,000 offer is quite an incentive.

Universal healthcare is a viable solution to the nation's 47 million uninsured and we should not let Massachusetts' problems scare us away from the idea....instead we should learn from the Bay State's ways and urge our government to produce legislative initiatives that would reduce the administrative burden on doctors and, as a result, the wait time for patients. And since such initiatives can have a long lag time, the sooner the government gets started....the better.

Click below to read the Boston Globe articles in their entirety:

Sept. 22, 2008 Boston Globe article:
Across Mass., wait to see doctors grows

Oct. 6, 2008 Boston Globe article:
Costly ER still draws many now insured

What are your thoughts about Massachusetts' healthcare mandate? Do you think national universal healthcare is within our horizon? Share your thoughts and opinions on the topic!

September 30, 2008

TEM featured on

Homeless...not Hopeless. This is the message that Lieutenant Commander Rick Koca tries to promote through his charity organization Stand Up For Kids.....and this is also the title of TEM's short film currently featured on the AARP Magazine's website.

"In our country, 13 kids die on the streets everyday. That was just more than I was willing to accept that I could go retire, that I could not do anything anymore," 66-year-old Koca says in the film. So in 1990, Koca founded Stand Up for Kids, a national organization run by volunteers who help homeless kids get off the streets.

Written, directed, and edited by Julie Winokur and photographed by photojournalist Ed Kashi, the 9-minute video Homeless...not Hopeless is the first of an AARP online film series focusing on adults who choose to re-career later in life.

Click on the link below to watch the film Homeless...not Hopeless:

Click on the link below to learn more about Stand Up for Kids:

September 26, 2008

As Financial Markets Crash, Insurance Premiums Continue to Rise and Put a Strain on American Families

"Even as Washington and Wall Street debate the best way to avert an economic disaster, increasing numbers of Americans are struggling with another financial crisis: the growing burden of unpaid medical bills." This first sentence of a New York Times' article Health Care Costs Increase Strain, Studies Find specifically describes an issue that many Americans may not realize during this tumultuous financial time--that the nation's economic downturn is having a significant toll not only on Americans' wallets but on their health as well.

The Commonwealth Fund states that "the federal minimum wage is now three dollars an hour lower, in real terms, than it was 40 years ago; gas and food prices are soaring; home values are declining; growth in health care costs is far outstripping income growth; and people are increasingly going without the protection of health coverage--nearly 9 million have lost their health insurance since 2000." As a result of these economic circumstances, more working families are struggling to pay their medical bills, accumulating medical debt, and are forced to make tough financial choices that often involves sacrificing needed health care and health insurance. Need a stat to put this issue into perspective? 41% of working-age adults, or 72 million people, reported a problem paying their medical bills or had accrued medical debt, up from 34%, or 58 million, in 2005 AND, in 2007, more than 28% of U.S. adults (an estimated 50 million people) were uninsured for some time during the past year.

Now, two new studies released September 24, 2008 by the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Center for Studying Health System Change, provide further evidence of the mounting strain that medical care is placing on working Americans...and these studies were completed earlier this year BEFORE the financial markets reached their current state of crisis! According to the studies, employees are paying an average of $3,354 in premiums for family coverage, more than double the amount they paid in 1999; and the total cost for family coverage now averages $12,680 a year. Due to these high insurance premiums, more and more families are unable to pay their medical costs and are therefore borrowing money to pay for these expenses or are opting not to have health insurance at all. In a study by the nonpartisan Center for Studying Health System Change, based on its national survey of households, nearly 1 of every 5 families had problems paying medical bills last year AND nearly 20% of those having difficulty said they considered declaring personal bankruptcy as a result of their medical bills.

Wanna know something else? Employees aren't the only ones affected by the increasing health insurance premiums....EMPLOYERS AND COMPANIES are affected as well! Almost all large employers offered coverage but only 62% of small companies did. Employees working for these big companies were also paying about $1,000 less a year for family coverage. So to deal with high-deductible premiums, employers of small companies are faced with the choice of dropping coverage altogether or asking their employees to pay much more in the form of deductibles and out-of-pocket expenses....many haven chosen the latter. A September 24 article in the Boston Globe says that in just ONE year, the percentage of workers enrolled in high-deductible insurance of $1,000 or more increased from 12% to 18%.

Let's give you a bigger picture to think about: insurance premiums have increased 119% since 1999, whereas workers' earnings have only increased 34% during the same time period and overall inflation increased 29%.

So what does this all mean? It means that high-insurance premiums are hitting both the INSURED and UNINSURED, and MUCH MORE needs to be done to make health care coverage more affordable for consumers and employers. In the Boston Globe article, Rep. Pete Stark, D-Calif., and chairman of the health subcommittee within the House Ways and Means Committee, says that "until we have universal coverage, these cost shifts away from insurers to consumers will continue."

September 23, 2008

TEM's India multimedia piece on National Geographic

National Geographic Magazine is currently featuring on its website our 30-minute multimedia piece, India's Fast Lane to the Future.

This 5-part film documents India's new 3,633-mile national expressway, and its effects on the the country's diverse population.

The film accompanies the article Fast Lane to the Future featured in the October edition of National Geographic Magazine, created by NG correspondent Don Belt and our very own world-reknowned photojournalist Ed Kashi.

Watch India's Fast Lane to the Future and see how the highway is changing the face of India:

What are your thoughts on India's new superhighway and growing modernization?

September 11, 2008

What is Medicare...and is it healthy?

In this week's edition of Newsweek Magazine, Newsweek reporter Mary Carmichael discusses Medicare with Joseph Newhouse, a Medicare expert and professor of health policy at Harvard University. Although Medicare is a key campaign issue in this year's presidential election, Carmichael and Newshouse discuss why NEITHER John McCain or Barack Obama are talking much about it. Click on the link below to read the Newsweek interview:

September 5, 2008


Check out Slates' review of our film Curse of the Black Gold and watch the film. (Slate is a daily magazine on the web that offers analysis and commentary about politics, news, and culture.)

An excerpt from Slate's September 5 article Curse of the Black - The devastating impact of 50 years of oil exploitation in the Niger Delta:

Fifty years ago, oil was discovered in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria. Today, at 2.1 million barrels per day, Nigeria is the sixth-largest oil-producing country in the world and a major oil partner of the United States. Although its oil industry generates millions of dollars in revenues daily, the average resident of the Niger Delta struggles to survive on less than $1 per day. These startling facts are portrayed in Curse of the Black Gold, a multimedia video produced by Julie Winokur of Talking Eyes Media.....

American Filmmaker Arrested in Nigeria

On August 31, a New York-based freelance filmmaker and journalist, Andrew Berends, and his interpreter were arrested and accused of spying while working in the oil-producing Delta region of Nigeria. Berends' passport and equipment were confiscated and he was taken into custody by Nigeria's State Security Service.

Unfortunately, Berends is not the only journalist to be detained while working in the Niger Delta. Our very own photojournalist Ed Kashi was arrested at gunpoint by a Nigerian Naval task force (and later handed over to the S.S.S.) for photographing a flow station from the river without permission. Ed was detained for six days before he was finally released.

The New York Times accurately describes the Niger Delta in its September 3, 2008 article "American Filmmaker Arrested in Nigeria."

"Despite its oil riches, the Niger Delta is a desperately poor increasingly lawless part of the country, where wealth is siphoned away by corrupt officials. Militants demand a greater share of the area's oil resources and claim to be fighting on behalf of the impoverished residents, but also appear to be engaging in many criminal acts of violence. Hundreds of foreign workers and wealthy Nigerians have been kidnapped for ransom, and oil theft is rampant."

The Agip flow station in Nembe, located in the Nigerian state of Bayelsa,
where Ed Kashi and his interpreter were arrested in June 2006.

Go to to learn more about the Niger Delta, see Ed Kashi's photos of the region, and to read his journal entries written during his detention (listed under the "EXTRAS!" tab). You can also click on the "Curse of the Black Gold" video listed under the column FILM at the top-right of this page.

September 3, 2008

Thank You for Supporting TEM

At Talking Eyes Media, we aim to use the power of pictures to address issues that are too often underrepresented in the main stream media. And when we receive feedback, such as the thoughtful letter Wendy Mahan wrote, we are thrilled to learn that our multimedia has touched someone and made a difference in their life. As we continue to create documentaries, we hope you will continue to share your thoughts with us. Thank you for your support!

[Wendy is an Instructional Designer at Pennsylvania State University's College of Health and Human Development. Below is her letter that she wrote to Julie Winokur, the co-founder of TEM and the director/producer of "The Sandwich Generation."]

August 29, 2008


What a poignant video. One of the faculty members dropped by my office while I was watching it, and we just sat in silence (with an occasional, "Oh my goodness!)

You touched on all the elements that the faculty here are trying to get across to the nursing students. They want them to realize that the elderly are people, not "throw a ways." The difficulty of locating services for the elderly and the psychosocial aspects are also well covered here. Thank you so much for sharing this with me.

I'm honestly in awe of you. I am your same age and my parents are in their late 70's, but they are relatively healthy. The sacrifices you have made are incredible, and you seem so strong. I am also impressed with your husband as well - he is a good, decent human being. What wonderful examples you both are for your children.


Take care and best of luck to you.


August 28, 2008

Uninsured Americans on the Decline....well, sorta

According to a report released by the U.S. Census Bureau on August 26, 2008, the number of Americans with health insurance declined in 2007....but in order for this statistic to be ENTIRELY factual, you'll have to "ignore the man behind the curtain."

The Census Bureau's report states that, after climbing steadily for six years, the number of Americans without health insurance dropped by more than a million in 2007, to 45.7 million. What's the catch? Health care experts say that the drop was the result of growth in government-sponsored health insurance programs (like Medicare and Medicaid) AND, at the same time, the number of people covered by private health insurance continued to decline. Over all, the percentage of people covered by government programs increased to to 27.8 percent in 2007 from 27 percent in 2006, and private health insurance fell from covering 67.9 percent in 2006 to 67.5 percent in 2007. Additionally, employment-based coverage also continued its decline dropping to 59.3 percent from 59.7 percent.

So, yes, technically, there was a SLIGHT decline in the number of uninsured Americans. This also means: one-million uninsured Americans down, just 45.7 million more uninsured Americans to go......

To read the 8-27-08 NYT article:
A Decline in Uninsured Is Reported for 2007

To read the Census Bureau's press release (includes a PDF link for the report Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2007):

August 13, 2008

For Better or Worse, For Richer or Poorer, For Co-Pays and Deductibles.....

"I [your name] take you [your partners name] for my lawful [wife/husband], to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, for co-pays and deductibles, in sickness and in health, until death do us part."

For co-pays and deductibles?? Could health insurance really be included in modern wedding vows? Well, maybe not in the wedding vow itself (unless you want to that is), but according to New York Times' reporter Kevin Sack, health benefits are inspiring many American couples to rush to the altar to marry or rush to the courts to divorce. Read Sack's Aug. 12, 2008 article "Health Benefits Inspire Rush to Marry, or Divorce" to learn more.

In a country where insurance is out of reach for many, what things would you do to obtain health insurance? Is marriage or divorce one of them?

A Riddle or A Hug? Lifestyle Factors That Can Prevent and/or Treat Dementia

I'd unravel ev'ry riddle,
For an individ'le
In trouble or in pain.
With the thoughts you'd be thinkin'
You could be another Lincoln,
If you only had a brain.
- Scarecrow, The Wizard of Oz

Just to register emotion
"Jealousy," "devotion"
And really feel the part.
I could stay young and chipper
And I'd lock it with a zipper
If I only had a heart.
- Tin Man, The Wizard of Oz

It seems that the Scarecrow and the Tin Man may have been on to something....Although modern medicine has yet to find a cure for dementia, it appears that the prevention and treatment of dementia fall within the areas of cognitive fitness (a.k.a. the power of thinkin') and social interaction (a.k.a. the ability to register emotion). Now, the Scarecrow may have been cravin' a brain and the Tin Man a heart, but in the real world of medicine, it's likely that both the brain and the heart hold equal sway over dementia.

The August 12, 2008 article published on, "Is It Really Smart to Teach Old Brains New Tricks?", discusses the recent marketing and popularity of computer brainteasers. What the Post calls "the brain-game craze," first began with the 2005 launch of Nintendo's Brain Age. Inspired by the work of prominent Japanese neuroscientist Dr. Ryuta Kawashima, Nintendo advertises that its Brain Age games feature activities designed to help stimulate your brain through cognitive exercise that will improve blood flow to the brain and, therefore, help increase and maintain brain function in aging brains. But as neuroscientist Denise C. Park says in the article, even though epidemiological studies suggest that people who are mentally engaged tend to get Alzheimer's later than others, it's too soon to know if there are long-term gains from computer brain teasers. Additionally, Park worries that "if people get too engrossed in these computer games, maybe they're not exercising or engaging with other people."

This then leads us to an alternative method of healing: the power of the human heart and social interaction....

In an August 10, 2008, Boston Globe article, Neil Munshi profiles 89-year-old Sol Rogers who uses a lot of hugs and kisses to help cope with his 61-year-old, Alzheimer-stricken wife. By singing his wife old songs, taking her out to the garden, or simply lying in bed with her and telling her how much he loves her, Sol has not only boosted his own ability to cope with her dementia but he has also increased his wife's communication and mobility skills. Furthermore, according to a new study reported by the Alzheimer's Association, regular social interaction can be so helpful as we age that those who are unmarried or not living with a partner in midlife could have an increased risk of developing Alzehimer's.

So what does this all mean? Rather than suggesting we all run out and purchase a Nintendo or make a quick dash to the altar, I believe that these articles and studies suggest that, although aging maintains its mysteries, research shows that our brains' destinies don't lie solely with our genetics--we also have the power to make lifestyle decisions that can help maintain healthy brains.

To read the above mentioned articles in their entirety:

August 12, 2008

Lower Quality of Healthcare Also Means a Lower Quality of Life for Many TennCare Enrollees

As discussed in our July 31 blog post, TennCare (Tennesse's Medicaid managed care program that provides health coverage for 1.2 million low-income children, pregnant women and disabled Tennesseans) will soon receive drastic cuts in its benefits. As of September 8, 2008, if a person's healthcare services are deemed medically necessary but too costly then he or she will no longer qualify for private duty nursing and will either have to forego at-home treatment or move to a nursing home to receive state care. Despite the severity of the topic however, this new healthcare cut is receiving little (if almost any) national media coverage. To learn more, read the Aug. 11 article TennCare enrollees brace for home health cuts posted on

August 11, 2008

The Digital Journalist

Curse of the Black Gold:
Photographs by Ed Kashi
August 2008
by Dirck Halstead

As anybody who has filled up his or her SUV recently, and watched the cost to do so rise to over $100, is painfully aware, a part of our daily ritual has become prohibitively expensive. All the warnings that went unheeded about our dependence on petroleum becoming unsustainable are now a fearful reality.

Click here to read the rest of the article.

The Digital Journalist featured Curse of the Black Gold with an article, a photo gallery and a video interview. Be sure to take a look at this thorough feature!

August 9, 2008

Niger Delta up on Moving Walls 14 Website

Moving Walls 14, the Open Society Institute's current exhibition, includes my work on the Niger Delta. They have just put up the websites with myself and the other photographers in this exhibition. There is a lot to see and listen to, including a trailer of our Curse of the Black Gold multimedia piece and in interview with me.

Moving Walls

July 31, 2008

TennCare in Trouble

A year ago we released Collateral Damage, a film that exposes the inhumane outcome of bottom dollar health care politics. The film tracks the story of how Governor Phil Bredesen opted to reel in his state's Medicaid budget by pushing 170,000 people out of the program. It turns out that was only the beginning of the story. TennCare has been under siege ever since. Yesterday we received an email from Michele Johnson, the managing attorney of the Tennessee Justice Center, a non-profit law firm that advocates on behalf of poor Tennesseans. She writes:

"We are feeling a little dé jà vu in TN as the state cuts home health/private duty nursing for about 1,000 medically fragile or vent dependent patients. If they need more than 42 hours a week of care, you lose it. The HMOs are telling patients to go to nursing homes, which of course, cannot meet their need and may or may not even accept them. The Bush administration said it was OK, so our legal hooks are few. No surprise we are having a heck of a time getting the media to cover this."

We're asking anyone and everyone we know to raise awareness to the plight of TennCare enrollees, and let Gov. Bredesen know that he can't balance his state's budget on the backs of the sickly and less fortunate.

July 23, 2008

XM Radio Host Interviews Ed Kashi on THE SANDWICH GENERATION

The 77-million Americans taking care of their children and aging parents are not only a growing segment of the nation's population, but they are also becoming a popular topic of conversation....

Last month, seasoned New York Times reporter Jane Gross featured our film The Sandwich Generation on her blog The New Old Age, NYT science editor David Corcoran discussed the film with Gross on his weekly Science Times Podcast, and now Lisa Belkin, host of the XM 155 Radio show Life's Work with Lisa Belkin, interviewed Ed Kashi on the film and his personal 'sandwich generation' experience. Read an excerpt from the interview below and click on the following link to hear the full interview.

"One of the things that kills me in our society is that somehow we're not supposed to honor our elders. I think in this fast paced, youth oriented society we're in, we lose sight of the fact that, not only is it detrimental for them, but eventually we want to be in that place, and it sure would be nice to be respected when we reach that place in our lives."
- Ed Kashi, excerpt from the interview with Lisa Belkin

July 14, 2008

AlterNet reports on Nigeria and CURSE OF THE BLACK GOLD

Did you know that the ongoing conflict in Nigeria's Niger Delta region can affect how much you pay at the pump? Nigeria is Africa's leading producer of petroleum and the world's sixth largest oil producer. This means that any time there is an oil spill or a militant attack in the Niger Delta, the world's gas consumers also feel the impact.

To learn more, check out's article "Africa: The Next Victim in Our Quest for Cheap Oil." The article includes an interview with Michael Watts (UC Berkeley Director of African Studies and editor of Curse of the Black Gold: 50 Years of Oil in the Niger Delta) and also features our short-film Curse of the Black Gold.

July 10, 2008

New York Times posts Part 2 of THE SANDWICH GENERATION

We previously announced that New York Times reporter Jane Gross posted the first part to our film The Sandwich Generation on her blog The New Old Age....

Now you can also find Part 2 of The Sandwich Generation on the blog as well! In her July 10 blog post "After Herbie, Another Kind of Home," Gross discusses the difficulties Julie and Ed faced a year into taking care of Julie's aging father, Herbie. Click on the link below to read the posting, watch the film's second installment, and scroll through people's comments and responses.

The New Old Age, July 10 blog posting, "After Herbie, Another Kind of Home"

And in case you missed Jane Gross' first posting on The Sandwich Generation......

The New Old Age, July 1 blog posting, "Coming Home for Herbie"

July 9, 2008

THE SANDWICH GENERATION featured on this week's Science Times Podcast

This week on The New York Times' Science Times Podcast, science editor David Corcoran interviews NYT reporter Jane Gross on her blog The New Old Age . Click below to listen to the full podcast and to hear the reporters' discussion of our film The Sandwich Generation (also featured on Jane Gross' blog).

July 3, 2008

Healthcare Access Expands in the E.U.

The New York Times reported today that, if a long-awaited proposal published on Wednesday becomes law, people living within the European Union will be able to receive most health care treatment ANYWHERE in the 27-nation bloc without getting prior authorization. If approved, the measures would apply to all residents in the EU and could be put into effect as soon as 2010. Currently, European citizens can be reimbursed for urgent treatment anywhere in the union, providing they contribute to a health insurance program at home.

Click here to read the New York Times story:

Journey to Rochester

On June 26, Ed (Kashi), Julie (Winokur), and their children, trekked 9 hours by car to Rochester, New York to attend the opening reception for an exhibit of Ed’s ground-breaking photos from the Niger Delta at the George Eastman House in Rochester, NY. Also on view is a 12-minute award-winning multi-media companion video produced by Julie and MediaStorm.

The powerful exhibition – CURSE OF THE BLACK GOLD: 50 YEARS OF OIL IN THE NIGER DELTA - features 37 graphic photos from Ed’s many sojourns to the oil-rich area. The pictures depict the decimation of the land and its people wrought by the confluence of irresponsible governance and oil extraction practices and deepening poverty.

This year Julie’s provocative multi-media piece won First Place Multimedia at the New York Photo Festival Awards. The video brings Ed’s photos to life and includes the voices of local environmentalists, activists and citizens – who describe the impact of the Nigerian oil industry in personal terms.

The photos in the exhibit are culled from Ed’s award-winning tome, CURSE OF THE BLACK GOLD: 50 YEARS OF OIL IN THE NIGER DELTA (powerHouse). The photos and multimedia video will be on view at the George Eastman House through September 1, 2008.

To view a trailer of the multimedia piece:"

For more information and to purchase a copy of the book:"

For more info on the exhibit:"

July 2, 2008

Two Hospitals, Two Coasts, One BIG Problem--Women Left to Die on Hospital Floors!

The number of uninsured Americans isn't the only healthcare problem on the rise....apparently, American hospitals' indifference to dying patients is growing as well!

The former Martin Luther King Jr.-Harbor Hospital in Los Angeles made headlines in May 2007 when hospital staffers walked past Edith Isabel Rodriguez writhing on the ER floor for 45 minutes. Even a janitor ignored Rodriguez as he mopped around her! Now, in the same week that security camera excerpts of Rodriguez's death were leaked to the public, ANOTHER similar surveillance tape was released showing a woman collapsing and writing on the floor of the Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn, New York! Esmin Green had been waiting in the hospital's psychiatric ER for almost 24 hours when she fell from her seat June 19. Other waiting-room patients not only sat idly by while Green laid there but hospital staffers and a security guard also ignored her. It took an hour and three minutes for a hospital staffer to go up to Green....and only after the staffer was alerted by a person in the waiting room.

Though these are only two cases out of thousands, isn't two cases TWO CASES too many? If we have the world's best medical technology, shouldn't we have the best medics to staff it?

Need to see it to believe it? Check out the New York Times' story featuring the surveillance video of Esmin Green's experience at Kings County Hospital in Brooklyn.

Access Healthcare San Francisco AHIP Protest

Over the past five years, Talking Eyes Media has worked tirelessly on a project about America's uninsured. As we continue working on this piece, we will keep you abreast on the most recent and prevalent news dealing with this topic. We hope you will contribute any healthcare news we have not posted as well as your own thoughts or opinions. Here's a healthcare update to get us on our way....

On Saturday, June 19, 2008, Americans across the United States demonstrated in favor of a guaranteed, single-payer healthcare and in protest of America's Health Insurance Plans (AHIP), the national association representing insurance companies. Watch the California Nurses Association's video from its recent protest at AHIP's annual convention in San Francisco! Special guests include Colombo's, SiCKO's Donna Smith and more!

July 1, 2008

After a long blink, our eyes are open and ready for some talking!

Since our last blog, Talking Eyes Media has been quite busy with lots of projects. But after taking a long 'blink' in our posts, TEM's eyes are now wide-open to blogging and are ready for some talking!

Firstly, we're proud to announce that our latest film, "The Sandwich Generation," is now available on DVD! (Click here to order a copy: In this emotionally charged account of family caregiving, TEM filmmaker Julie Winokur and her husband, photojournalist Ed Kashi, reveal their personal account of raising two young children while caring for Julie's aging father, Herbie. At 83, Herbie suffers from dementia and is unable to live alone. Unfortunately however, Julie and Ed's experience with an aging parent is far from rare. Like 20-million other Americans, Julie and Ed are part of "The Sandwich Generation"--those babyboomers caught between their aging parents and young children.

In her new blog titled "The New Old Age," New York Times reporter Jane Gross explores this unprecedented "Sandwich Generation" and its challenges. As Gross mentions on her blog, adults over age 80 are the fastest growing population and most will spend years dependent on other words, this is a problem that will not be going away.

I invite you all to visit Jane Gross' blog "The New Old Age" and read the article "Coming Home for Herbie"--a two-part article series on TEM's film "The Sandwich Generation." Would you make the same sacrifice Julie and Ed made? What would you want your own children to do?

March 20, 2008

The Sandwich Generation

We are about to release our 1/2 hour film, "The Sandwich Generation."

DVDs will be available by mid-April 2008. In anticipation of the big launch, we were featured on Good Morning America this morning, March 20 in a segment on caring for parents and children simultaneously.

You can see the segment at:


Talking Eyes Media is finally ready to enter the blogging age. We will use this as a forum to keep you posted about our ongoing projects and keep you up to date on the issues that Talking Eyes Media covers.  

We invite you to use this blog as a place to share your reactions and personal stories. If you know any resources that will help address the issues we cover, please let us know. 

-Julie Winokur