DR. STEVEN J. KINCAID, Kennewick
I'm tired of Kadlec Regional Medical Center's double-talking. Kadlec publicly maintains it supports a new Kennewick General Hospital but then files a lengthy protest asking the state to deny KGH's amended certificate of need. Kadlec says "in its opinion" KGH can't afford this hospital. Perhaps it's Kadlec that can't afford it.
Kadlec's bond rating was just downgraded because of the 140 percent increase in its debt over the past two years -- debt being at least partly incurred to pay for the free-standing emergency room Kadlec is building close to the new KGH hospital. How many of us are going to use a "free-standing ER" when there's a fully operating hospital/ER nearby?
Kadlec's expansion plans also fly in the face of the very advice Kadlec's spokesman Jim Hall is quoted as offering KGH: This is a "time of real uncertainty in health care, and organizations are doing all we can to contain costs and function in a dramatically changing environment."
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KGH has worked hard to develop a solid financing plan to provide district residents with the kind of health care facility we need and deserve -- without using tax dollars. Kadlec needs to stop its ongoing opposition to this hospital and pay attention to its own financial house.