Assembly should remain neutral on surgery center

The proposal to build a surgery center in Kenai has brought to mind several thoughts.

 

First, am I the only one that thinks it's a little strange that the self-appointed CPGH, Inc. board would have one of its members (now former) to vote in the Aug. 2011 meeting and then have his name attached to a Certificate of Need (CON) application the next month?

Second, after witnessing the board's thoroughness and diligence in researching and recommending the sale (joint venture) of our hospital, I find it very odd that they would not complete a 4th operating room, especially since it was the terms of CPH's CON.

Third, maybe we should listen to the doctors. If they are displeased with how things are operating at CPH and feel the need to operate somewhere else, we should support them. They wouldn't need to go somewhere else if the community put pressure on the board and its administration to make the hospital a physician-friendly environment.

Fourth, free enterprise promotes competition. Maybe next year, the board will think twice about raising their rates another six percent. I also know several surgery nurses that will be delighted to have other options for work since they are expected to work full days, then do surgeries at night and still return to work exhausted the next day.

Lastly, I think this is now being used as an example to show the assembly how difficult it is to own an asset like a hospital, which would make selling the hospital or padding the lease and operating agreement more appealing to the assembly. But cheer up assembly! You can own a great hospital and support economic growth in Kenai. You should remain neutral about the building of the surgery center.

Let the community express their concerns to the state on Thursday and let the state decide. Meanwhile, expect more from the hospital board, they should be more than capable to resolve conflict with their disgruntled physicians.

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