LETTERS: Emergency rooms part of problem

To the editor:

The editorial on Medicaid in Monday’s Review-Journal (“More ER visits, higher costs to public”) bypasses one important reality: Emergency rooms — in hospitals, urgent care centers or otherwise — aren’t what they used to be. Regardless of the facility, it is an unsystematic mess, with several classes of users all seeking the same space and attention. Who knows when or how they might make it to triage?

Emergency (aka trauma) patients are accepted as such if they arrive by ambulance and are pre-screened. It is also where really sick people now wait hours for rationed treatment, regardless of finances. The reasons for such waits may be attributed to medical professionals not wanting your germs in their offices, or due to the requirements of accepting all patients, regardless of whether they will or can pay their way. Time is wasted everywhere.

Patients sent by doctors for scheduled services are delayed while personal history and documents are again reviewed and entered, even if the forms had already been completed in advance. And how about those who are truly sick and needy, sitting for hours in the waiting room without even a call button?



Paying for health care

To the editor:

Regarding Paul Harasim’s column (“Everyone should get health care,” Monday Review-Journal), while I agree that everyone should get health care, I have a problem with the expectation that the government should pay for it. When are the taxpayers going to get full credit for being the government that actually pays the bills?

I’m no expert on the subject, but I read the newspaper and watch the news, and I don’t recall much regarding those countries belonging to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development and having universal health coverage as being involved in policing the world, as the United States is. Are those countries spending billions on foreign aid and military intervention in other countries? Do they allow illegal immigrants to live and work in their countries, then provide them with health care? Are they considering allowing 11 million more immigrants into their countries and offering them health care?

I have to admit to having no answers on providing universal health care, but I’m a little tired of those who advocate it while not providing any solutions other than to raise taxes. If those other countries are so generous with health care, why does the U.S. seem to be the country that can’t control the influx of illegal immigrants?



National Finals Rodeo

To the editor:

Was no one appalled by the way Las Vegas Events’ grand poobahs and other city leaders responded to the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association’s announcement of possibly taking the National Finals Rodeo elsewhere? The entire upper echelon from Las Vegas Events and others in leadership roles related to the NFR should be summarily dismissed. They fell over themselves, rushing to the nearest microphone/camera to announce that, in effect, it was no big deal if the NFR left. Michael Gaughan yammers he can cobble together a competing event in no time. What a way to conduct diplomacy and carry out sensitive negotiations, by use of threats and attempts at intimidation.

We looked bush-league in the extreme. Everyone knew the NFR contract was coming up for renewal. Didn’t Las Vegas Events expect other cities would attempt to lure away a big player like the NFR? Arrogance ruled the day as Las Vegas Events assumed the PRCA would re-up at whatever modest scraps were offered as incentives. When the PRCA looked at another very lucrative offer from Osceola County, Fla., Chicken Little ruled the day around here. The clucking and flapping of arms was deafening. Have our representatives never heard of quiet negotiation?

Everything else being equal and proper respect shown, together with quiet discussions, I think the PRCA would probably prefer to stay in Las Vegas. But Las Vegas needs to accept that it is all about the money. Who should know that better than people in this town?

Many of these rodeo participants have a short shelf life. It’s just too hard and dangerous a sport. A lot more prize money is very tempting. The Florida offer was way above what Las Vegas was paying. Who can blame the PRCA if it accepted that offer, especially after the dressing down they received in the media, courtesy of the very people we trusted to keep the event here? Too bad these jokers never heard the old sales axiom that it’s easier to keep a good customer than to find a replacement.