Hospital Commissioner Tony Deleo Retires

The Port Townsend Leader is reporting that Tony Deleo has decided to step down after 44 years as Jefferson County Hospital Commissioner. This paves the way for Cheri Van Hoover to run unchallenged, but the filing deadline is still a few weeks away.

Why is this important? Given the impending changes to the health care system under Trump and the Republicans an activist board member is needed now more than ever. While Tony has done a great job over his many terms, it seems that Cheri Van Hoover is a much better fit for the needs of the public of Jefferson County today.

Thank you Tony Deleo for your service to this county! We know that you did it for the good of the community.

Death by naturopathic curcumin (tumeric) injection confirmed

This story also implicates Bastyr University in Seattle. Follow the Forbes article as the source. Read the following link to get the full story. It is quite damning of the practice of injecting curcumin.

The San Diego Medical Examiner has confirmed that 30-year-old Jade Erick was killed by an intravenous turmeric solution administered by a California naturopath whom she had consulted for treatment of eczema. [Hermes BM. Confirmed: Licensed naturopathic doctor gave lethal ‘turmeric’ injection. Forbes, April 10, 2017] The naturopath, Kim Kelly, had advocated the use of intravenous curcumin for “any type of inflammatory condition, whether it be arthritis, autoimmune conditions, Alzheimer’s or dementia” and claimed that “promising effects have been observed in patients with various pro-inflammatory diseases.” Curcumin is a constituent of turmeric, which is useful as a spice but has not been proven safe and effective for the treatment of any health problem. [Nelson KM. The essential medicinal chemistry of curcumin. Journal of Medicinal Chemistry 60:1620-1637, 2017]

https://www.forbes.com/sites/brittmariehermes/2017/04/10/confirmed-licensed-naturopathic-doctor-gave-lethal-turmeric-injection/#6e5fd5a66326

…But he must not be aware that curcumin and its metabolic byproducts are related to cardiotoxicity as they inhibit certain potassium channels in cardiac tissue, which can stop the heart

Washington state awarded $11M to battle opioid epidemic – KREM and others

Thank you President Obama. It was his administration that set it in motion and Trumps can’t deny that there is an Opioid crisis. Now the problem is what are we going to use for the millions of people in real pain who now can’t get opioids?

WASHINGTON STATE – Washington state is set to receive $11 million to combat the state’s opioid epidemic.

The money comes from a grant, totaling $485 million, awarded to states and territories by the Trump Administration.

The funding will be provided through the State Targeted Response to the Opioid Crisis Grants administered by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

Cheri Van Hoover throws hat in ring for Jefferson County Hospital Commissioner

Cheri Van Hoover of District 2 has decided to run for the seat of Jefferson County Hospital Commissioner Position 1. Cheri will be running against long time Hospital Commissioner Tony DeLeo.

Cheri brings a wealth of real world medical experience to the position. She has been a working mid-wife for over 30 years, including a teacher of midwifery in the area. As a person who’s son was born with assistance from a midwife, I can attest to the value these women bring to the medical practice. Cheri has also been a counselor in a community-based mental health crisis intervention residence and an educator & health policy professor,  nationally recognized for instructing medical, nursing, and midwifery students.

Her professional leadership includes midwife practice administration, along with having been the chair of national committees for the American College of Nurse-Midwives and chair of the Ethics Task Force for Northern California Kaiser Nurse-Midwives Peer Group.

She has also run small businesses in the county, having been an owner of several small businesses spanning 40 years. Currently she owns the  Great Blue Heron’s Nest B&B, Port Hadlock.

Her community experience includes work with the Tri-Area Garden Club (past president) & Master Gardener Foundation of Jefferson County (past board member), work with salmon habitat restoration groups, volunteering with the Friends of the Jefferson County Library and the Olycap Community Thrift Store along with efforts to support the Jamestown/Sequim Drug-Free Community Coalition.

While Mr. Deleo has given a lot to the community over the years, in attending hospital commission meetings I can say that he seems out of step with the current issues facing the Commissioners. His focus on keeping the commissioners out of any areas of controversy, such as throwing their support behind single payer efforts, seems at odds with the community demands. While newer members of the Board such as Kees Kolff work to promote better community healthcare access,especially for lower income patients and have fought for more transparency to collections, along with challenging the hospital on issues such as major changes to the INR lab, Mr. Deleo has been reluctant to support these efforts. His point of view publicly appears to be that the only role of the Commissioners is to either hire or fire Mr. Glenn (the JCH CEO), and do the bare minimum needed to satisfy the requirements of the position. While we expect that the bare minimum is always achieved, it seems we need more in this era.

The challenges that this county’s hospital is going to face in the coming years under the current President and his Congress mean we need a commissioner that is going to fight for the patients and the hospital. This may mean challenging bureaucratic dogma (which is not unique to this hospital) as well as fighting hard at state and federal levels to maintain current funding and find better ways to provide healthcare for all our citizens. 

That effort needs new blood, but not just a new face, someone who understands the concerns of the medical community along with the concerns of the hospital. Every medical professional I have talked to in the last number of years have had nothing positive to say about the world we are creating of healthcare in America. We are far behind all other industrialized countries in our indices of health. Congressional meddling in our healthcare has created a system where the government doesn’t even attempt to negotiate drug prices for the spending of our tax dollars. The electronic record system is incredibly problematic for practitioners and we are moving farther and farther away from private practitioners to a system of huge regional health hubs that treat patients more and more like a number, and creating a system that has no way of properly understanding the prices you will be charged for your work. There are very few examples of corporations who treat their customers like this. For good reason.

Jefferson County Healthcare under Mr. Glenn is doing very good work overall given their resources. However there are a number of areas that could be improved, and there are independent watchdog groups that are working to prod the hospital in ways that they feel can make it more customer oriented. Cheri Van Hoover is someone who supports these efforts and will work with us to help oversee the healthcare system here, which is also one of the jobs of the Hospital Commissioners. 

For those reasons, I support Cheri Van Hoover and urge Mr. DeLeo to stand down and retire from the Board, allowing Cheri to run unopposed for this position. We thank him for his decades of support, but feel it’s time for a new approach.

You can learn more about Cheri at the following link, and donate to her campaign.

http://cheriforhealthcom.businesscatalyst.com/about-cheri.html

How U.S. Health Care Became Big Business – Fresh Air

Terry Gross interview with Dr. Elisabeth Rosenthal.

Health care is a trillion-dollar industry in America, but are we getting what we pay for? Dr. Elisabeth Rosenthal, a medical journalist who formerly worked as a medical doctor, warns that the existing system too often focuses on financial incentives over health or science.

How U.S. Health Care Became Big Business

The Vitamin D Craze- Truth and Fiction

The New York Times has an excellent article outlining the current Vitamin D craze, it’s roots and it’s myths. I have discussed this with a medical professional, who mentions that for people with certain diseases, like osteoporosis or kidney disease, a real deficit in Vitamin D is possible. But for most people, it’s just not an issue. And because the craze has insurance companies declining to cover the testing in many cases, these patients with real need are getting their tests turned down by the companies. As the NY Times article points out, the wide scale studies are not backing up the medical professionals who set this whole fad in motion.