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Your Views for February 2

‘Humane’ treatment

A few days ago, a tormenting decision was made to put down our faithful companion and friend of 10 wonderful years , Ziggy. Since he lost the use of his hind legs, we did not know what to do because he weighed over 100 pounds. A call to our veterinarian supplied the solution.

The vet supplied a sedative and referred us to Hawaii Island Humane Society.

The staff there was compassionate and friendly and came out to our home to pick up Ziggy.

I thank them for the care and the handling of Ziggy’s last few moments. Thank you again for putting “humane” in the name of your organization.

Carmine Spada


Geothermal’s legacy

(The Jan. 30) Tribune-Herald newspaper section, “This day is history — 1988” (page B5), was very interesting and alarming. I’m quite sure I’m not the only reader who noticed that the advocates for developing geothermal power on the Big Island haven’t given up.

Imagine the results of that 1988 newspaper ad: “Come to Hawaii. Swim in Polluted Water. Breathe Toxic Fumes. See Ugly Electric Towers.” Is that the reputation the Big Island wants to promote?

Judy Stenger


The real effects

It’s deeply puzzling that Hilo Medical Center CEO Howard Ainsley, who I’d have thought to be better informed, would say that “hospitals nationwide are being pushed to the brink of collapse, given the new health reform law changes.” Two examples challenging his perspective are articles found in “Becker’s Hospital Review” and Reuters.

In the former, a December article titled “Health Care Reform Going Forward: What’s the Impact on Providers?” states that future provider revenues will have less to do with patient volumes and more to do with clinical outcomes, quality and cost efficiency. Providers that get good results for their patients and keep costs in check stand to be rewarded with performance bonuses, shared savings and other revenue enhancements. Those providers that fail to do these things can expect financial penalties which will affect revenues.

To me, this reads that hospitals nationwide are being pushed toward significant improvements, given the new health reform law.

A November Reuters article titled “UPDATE 3 — Health care investors bet on hospitals after Obama win” states that with the expansion of insurance coverage to an additional 30 million people over the next decade, financial markets “see the greatest potential benefit going to hospitals, which have been burdened with high debt loads from covering medical care for the uninsured. As more of these patients receive health coverage, hospitals will pay less out of their own pockets.”

To me, this reads that hospitals nationwide are being helped to increase their revenues, given the new health reform law.

I hope that Ainsley returns the Tribune-Herald’s call and provides greater clarity on what steps HMC is taking to meet the terms of health care reform.

Ed Comstock



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