A doctor’s prescription for community
As a practicing emergency room physician in Naples for the past 18 years, I have seen more than my share of heart attacks and strokes among our residents. If the Naples City Council approves the NCH Healthcare System’s plans to add a world-class Heart, Stroke and Vascular Institute, it will be a day of celebration and just what this doctor would order to help our entire community.
Even before the first brick is to be laid, the new Institute will already have a distinguished and storied acumen behind it. NCH has been recognized by Healthgrades as a top 100 hospital in the nation for cardiac excellence for seven years in a row. Additionally, the Society for Thoracic Surgeons also recognized the NCH Heart Institute with its highest three-star rating for CABG procedures.
As one of many physicians working at NCH, I value the trust our patients put in us to treat them, the trust you have in us to cure your illness, and the trust you have in us to enhance your quality of life. I ask for that same trust again when I say that this new facility and its expanded capabilities will be a game-changer for the residents of our community who may experience a stroke or cardiac issue. As doctors, we value our patients, and we value your support in helping us to bring the latest cardiac, vascular, and stroke treatment options to our community to help us all live longer, happier, healthier lives.
Todd Bethel, M.D., president, NCH Medical Staff, Naples
NCH growing its services
Seventeen years ago I had complete cardiac arrest while working out with my personal exercise trainer at a Naples country club. CPR did not help but an AED machine did and I was taken to NCH. After numerous tests they located the problem and the cardiac team performed a two-way bypass and saved my life.
I was so impressed with the care and professionalism NCH exhibited, I decided to dedicate what service I might to enhance the hospital in the minds of neighbors and friends. I am happy to have convinced friends to have procedures done here in Naples rather than traveling North to receive care. They have all had successful experiences.
I am very excited to see our community hospital grow and become a major destination for cardiac procedures as well as several other medical treatments for our long, happy, healthy lives.
Kathryn Friday, Naples
Editorial hypocritical, partisan
Your Sunday Feb. 13 editorial (Everglades issue) would be funny if it weren’t totally hypocritical and partisan. Biden ignored Florida’s most important ecological project and you criticize Gov. DeSantis and Congressman Mast for “pointing fingers,” so therefore the president won’t play nice. Are you kidding? Biden called all Republicans who disagreed with him “racists.” That’s not “politicking”? That’s governing? Your lack of self-awareness is astonishing. Even when our state of 21 million people gets shafted you side with the failing administration. How about an editorial on inflation, the border crisis of human trafficking and drugs (100,000 dead), lack of COVID test kits, Ukraine, and on and on.
Your “opinion” pieces get more desperate as the administration fails us at every turn. Your editorial board is not serving us well. Reflect on that.
William McKernan, Cape Coral
Elected-superintendent bill dangerous
Watching the board of education meeting last week, I was alarmed by the drastic consequences an elected, partisan superintendent of schools as proposed by HB 497 would have for the role of the board, the functioning of the district, the teaching and learning of our students.
I was an executive county superintendent in NJ, overseeing more than 70 school districts and superintendents and a district superintendent for a total of 35 years.
From my experience, I predict these consequences:
The district focus will change from teaching and learning to elections and fundraising. Fundraising, as we know, is the main focus for any politician. Why would it be any different for a partisan superintendent of schools elected every four years? The fundraising possibilities are endless — from individuals, to companies, to vendors, consultants, anyone wishing to do business with and influence the district. An elected, partisan superintendent would become the most powerful politician in Lee County.
The elected, nonpartisan school board will lose its power. The superintendent will “report” to the voters and to the political party. The board’s responsibilities for oversight of any kind will be extremely limited.
Student achievement will suffer because this elected position has no requirements for experience and knowledge of public education.
I hope that concerned citizens of all ages and political preferences will speak out and take a strong stand against this dangerous, destructive bill.
Samuel B. Stewart, Ed.D, Fort Myers
How did we get here?
I never thought I would see the day in the United States of America when the “free press” would become “the enemy of the people,” that books would be banned, that family reproductive decisions would be determined by the state, that teachers would be threatened with jail if they taught ideas, that presidents would be above the law, that instead of welcome diversity and a backbone of our economy, immigration would be considered a threat, that Democrats and Republicans would be enemies. How did we get here?
Judy Freiberg, Naples
Let’s not go back there
For those of you who weren’t alive or too young to vote in the ’60s, this one’s for you.
Remember the good old days when women used to try a coat hanger, falling down the stairs, etc. to abort a fetus? You don’t. I do.
How many of you were at the airport in the ’60s when young women would come off the planes, weak and bleeding from a botched abortion in Puerto Rico? You don’t. I do.
Many of us from the ’60s are gone now. Those who remain must bear testament for those who suffered.
I feel like we are back in the ’60s. Book bans, hate of any race other than white, and constant reminders that as a girl or young woman, you were just an appendage of a man.
If you haven’t lived through the past, the future will be quite grim. Next time you go to vote, remember us who were there.
Barbara Gribin, Fort Myers
Biden should cooperate on Everglades
The article in Sunday’s News Press titled (DeSantis, Mast must lead on Everglades issue) was mind boggling. It accuses Gov. Ron DeSantis and U.S. Rep. Brian Mast of finger-pointing and failing to work together with the Biden administration and for criticizing the administration for failing to include money for the restoration project in the $1.2 trillion federal infrastructure package. There is not a word about Biden not being cooperative. Also, further in the article it is mentioned that in 2000 President Bill Clinton gathered with Republican leaders at the signing ceremony for a $7.8 Billion bipartisan bill to revive the Everglades. Even with all the rhetoric in the article it might have been stated that Biden could have acted presidential, much like Clinton, and reached out to DeSantis to offer help. Because of the importance of the restoration project, yes, we expect Biden to have played nice.
Anthony Farina, Fort Myers
This article originally appeared on Fort Myers News-Press: Letters to the editor for Thursday, February 17, 2022