Letter to the Editor: We must do better

Thank you to the DSN for publishing the July 19 letter in which I called for an open mind as we evaluate the call for a health care system that works for all Americans. The core of the letter was to ask us to think and evaluate before falling into the trap of name calling and fear-mongering that passes for dialogue in today’s political arena. The (online) comments show that my plea fell for the most part on deaf ears. That shouldn’t surprise me but, eternal optimist that I am, it did.

My 40-year career was spent as a professional health care provider. It is abundantly clear that U.S. health care, as marvelous as it is in some instances, falls short of adequate basic care for many of us especially our poor and our black/brown citizens. We have the most expensive health care system in the world but health outcomes often do not prove the efficiency and effectiveness of that expense.

We fall behind comparable countries in infant mortality(death before 1 year of age)and in child mortality (death before 5 years of age). Millions of us cannot afford health care; Obamacare, with all its flaws, began to address that. But Obamacare is on its deathbed having been systematically slaughtered by the proverbial 1,000 cuts. Americans use emergency room care more than other countries. We can do better. We must if we have any hope of reigning in costs that represent an ever greater share of our national budget.

Patricia Frey

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