The article “St. Joseph workers rally following hospital staff cuts” by Shomik Mukherjee, (Times-Standard, Jan. 25, Page A2) is important on more than one level: that people understand what hardships our professional caregivers endure trying to do their jobs (surely 25 patients per nurse can only result in imperfect performance due to overwork and exhaustion), but also on another level that your article does not address; namely, that of the role corporate interests pay in running community hospitals.
This is yet another area where a single-payer health care system would be instrumental in regulating the behavior of hospitals and health clinics. A single-payer system would prevent the current loopholes that allow so-called nonprofits to reel in huge amounts of compensation by downsizing their workforce and ultimately putting the public in jeopardy. The “nonprofit” take pulled in by St. Joe’s of some $40-plus million last year is in evidence.
Now is certainly the time, if not way past, for a cost-saving, transparent, universal health care system. It is only by removing profit and unneeded administrative costs that we can achieve healthcare justice.
I hope everyone can find a copy of the informative, single-payer publication, “What If,” put out by Physicians for a National Health Program, and specially updated for Humboldt County interest. They are available in many local shops and clinics or by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org or go to healthcareforall.org. The public is invited to free HCA/PNHP—Humboldt Chapters meetings every fourth Wednesday, 5 p.m. at The Sanctuary, 1301 J St., Arcata.
Patty Harvey, Willow Creek