Opening with profiles of several ordinary Americans whose lives have been disrupted, shattered and--in some cases--ended by health care catastrophe, the film makes it clear that the crisis doesn't only affect the 47 million uninsured citizens, but also the millions of others who dutifully pay their premiums and who often get strangled by bureaucratic red tape as well. After detailing just how the system got into such a mess (the short answer: profits and Nixon), viewers are whisked around the world, visiting countries including Canada, Great Britain and France, where all citizens receive free medical benefits. Finally, Moore gathers a group of 9/11 heroes--rescue workers now suffering from debilitating illnesses who have been denied medical attention in the United States. He takes them to a most expected place, and in addition to finally receiving care; they also engage in some unexpected diplomacy. The film is a straight-shooting portrait of the crazy and sometimes cruel U.S. health care system, told from the vantage of everyday people faced with extraordinary and bizarre challenges in their quest for basic health coverage.