NC Media Watch

A quest for reason and accuracy in letters to the editor, guest editorials and other issues of interest to the citizens of Western Nevada County.

Saturday, January 08, 2005

Hospital article questions

Hospital far from closing - Officials say finances bad, not ruinous, Dave Moller writes in the January 8, 2005 Union front page.
At Sierra Nevada Memorial, "the hospital is not in danger of closing, or even close to that," Cooke said. Fewer patients, declining insurance payouts and higher costs are the reasons for the hospital's woes, said Cooke and hospital CEO Tom Collier.
Well, I have a couple of questions? Why does the hospital have fewer patients, when the local population of seniors is expanding? It is one of the fastest growing population cohorts in the County. Are these new seniors more healthy and required less care? Or, are they seeking care outside the community, in Auburn, Roseville and Sacramento? If that is the case, as a hospital administrator I would want to know why?

As a newspaper reporter, I would be asking some second level questions. I might even seek out people who are going outside the community for medical care, and ask why. Could it be they are seeking lower cost, higher quality care? Are Auburn and Roseville medical care facilties considered better options, worth the drive? This second level investigation could be a more interesting story than some layoffs.

Tell me what you think


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