Seven Days

To the Editor:

[Re “Projecting Millions in Losses, Vermont’s Largest Hospitals Ask for Rate Increases,” March 18, online]: So what else is new? Health care costs keep rising. Primary care doctors and nurses are in short supply, overworked and underpaid. There is nowhere for new recruits to live. We must rely on travel docs and nurses to get help, and if we need to see a specialist, we must wait months.

Has anyone thought about how much we all must pay for administrative costs under this weird and unsustainable system? What are the CEOs of OneCare Vermont, the University of Vermont Medical Center, Blue Cross Blue Shield and all the other intermediaries being paid to make sure that patients are not getting “unnecessary care”? And why are patients/consumers not considered to be “stakeholders” in this nonsystem? Shouldn’t we the people have a say in what we need and are able to pay for health care according to our incomes? Where is the equity in all of this? If we are seriously ill, we must start a fundraiser.

Universal, publicly financed and administered health care is the only solution that jumps out at me. Let’s get rid of all those so-called private administrators and pay the providers a living wage!

Mary Alice Bisbee