The long-running ABC medical drama has dabbled in insurance storylines in the past. "Yet now," says Adrienne Westenfeld, "the show is broadening its lens from occasional insurance snafus to challenging the corrupt system as a whole, with Meredith becoming a crusader for affordable healthcare and criminal justice reform." Westenfeld adds: "Character growth is part and parcel of any narrative, yet to see Meredith’s understanding of the world’s harsh realities broaden and to see her grow into an activist is to see a form of character growth we don’t often see in this kind of television...Grey’s has always been political in its storylines, forcing its characters to weigh an eternal moral conundrum: play by the rules of the broken system, or do the right thing despite the consequences? That conundrum has made for excellent, zeitgeisty television, sending the characters to the outer reaches of human empathy. We’ve seen doctors give life-saving medical intervention to children whose parents refused to give consent for treatment. We’ve seen doctors of color forced to treat white supremacists. We’ve seen doctors struggle to sit on their hands when patients refuse simple blood transfusions for religious reasons. Yet this season, Grey’s isn’t limiting its purview to individual human stories—instead, it’s taking a big swing at the brokenness of the system as a whole. It also takes a decidedly intersectional view, yoking the problem of healthcare together with issues of race, class, and citizenship. As Meredith’s eyes open to the problem and the knottiness of it, so too do ours. In an election year, such clear-eyed interrogation of the system can’t be more timely."