Heritage sale lets peninsula residents care for their elders

Posted: Wednesday, March 29, 2006

The purchase of Heritage Place by Central Peninsula General Hospital is the right idea because caring for those among us who are unable to care for themselves is the right thing to do. The purchase of HP by CPGH is not a “bad fiscal idea” as has been suggested because fiscal considerations do not define right and wrong.

Anyone concerned or with questions about the purchase of HP by CPGH should visit HP at 232 Rockwell Ave. in Soldotna. Talk to the administrator, Dennis Murray, talk to staff, and visit with the residents. And while the fiscal realities of the administration of HP’s long-term nursing care by CPGH are good — as was pointed out in reporter Hal Spence’s article in the Clarion (March 17) — a visit to HP would put the financial aspects of such care into proper perspective.

Moreover, complaints about Banner Health, who presently owns HP, lowering the sale price of HP to CPGH in order to avoid a vote on the purchase are ill-considered at best, disingenuous at worst. Who put the million-dollar cap in place if not the voters? Why then are some complaining when business complies with the voters’ wishes and the borough is offered a very good deal as a result? Holding our elected officials responsible for how they spend tax money is fine, but such activity can become a smoke-screen for conspiracy theories, social irresponsibility, and selfishness.

My mother, who suffered from Alzheimer’s, lived with my wife and I for 3 1/2 years until her disease progressed to the point where she needed 24-hour care. At that time, she became a resident of HP where she enjoyed what social life she was capable of responding to and where she received 24-hour care until she passed away a year ago. My mother lived at HP for nearly four years. The residents of HP are our mothers, fathers, friends, and neighbors. What should be done with these folks? Who should be responsible for their care if not us? The purchase of HP by CPGH is the right thing to do because it is right that we collectively care for our elders.

John Nelson

Heritage Place board member

Soldotna



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