Letter to the Editor: How to spend less on health care

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Dear editor,
A few words from a cranky family doctor who is your neighbor. We are all paying through our noses for health care. Here is my plan to spend less.

Get your shots. Stop smoking. Exercise a lot. Get your pap smears and control your blood pressure. Stop pretending that spa-like ambience, fancy meal service, and customer surveys emphasizing perfection are reasonable elements of a public health program.

Do not pressure me for narcotics, Valium, Adderall or Ambien.  These are dangerous – and controlled for a good reason. Hospitals and emergency departments are for catastrophe. No one should awaken from a terrible wreck, difficult birth, perhaps of a disabled child, or suicide attempt, finding they have brought financial ruin. We can fix this.

Well-suited men and women, prowling the executive suites of hospitals and insurance companies, do not want you to hear this. In order to rake in their zillion dollar salaries, they promote an impossible vision and class conflict regarding who gets the spa treatments and fancy meals.

Anne Cooper, M.D.
Tacoma

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