“No kill” can equal cruelty
A sick and injured kitten showed up on my doorstep. When I took her to the animal shelter, I learned she had been trapped, spayed and abandoned by the shelter, and her stomach injury was from where she had ripped open the stitches from her spay surgery. The shelter informed me it was going to put this kitten back outside, so I took her to my veterinarian, who diagnosed her with malnutrition, a respiratory infection and ear mites. She was so ill she had to be hospitalized for a week.
Despite seeing this kitten’s terrible condition, the shelter’s position was that cats “do fine out there.” I was appalled, and so was my vet.
When I first heard the shelter was going “no kill,” I thought it sounded wonderful, but evidently abandoning cats is one way for the shelter to keep animals out of its statistics. If “no kill” means leaving a kitten to suffer and die outside alone, then you tell me what’s kinder, abandonment or euthanasia?
As long as more animals are being born than there are homes for them, “no kill” means “no help”. Helpless animals are counting on caring people to speak out against these cruel policies.
Bevin order laudable
Gov. Matt Bevin got it right. He signed an emergency order to remove the regulatory hurdle of “certificate of need” (CON) for the provision of emergency medical services in Kentucky. Kentucky is one of only four states that require a CON for ground emergency services. Satisfying a CON may sound like it might be protecting the public but in reality creates an environment rich in bureaucratic and self-interest politics. This creates a monopoly exists in the provision of ambulance services.
As a decades-old member of the medical community in Bowling Green, I believe Bevin’s efforts will lead to more options and greater access to health care. While Bowling Green/Warren County is the third-largest community in Kentucky, we have only one ambulance service. Smaller surrounding communities have up to three. This single service in Bowling Green is owned and operated by one of the two local hospitals.
Bevin has put forth the mechanism to rectify the situation and should be recognized for his effort.
Seniors to bear brunt
Senior citizens need to listen up. Republicans are talking openly about cutting entitlements, their name for Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, because their tax cuts didn’t pay for themselves and the national debt keeps growing. Larry Kudlow, President Donald Trump’s economic advisor, Sen. Mitch McConnell, and the president himself are talking about balancing the budget on the backs of seniors.
Taxes need consideration
I don’t think Kentuckians realized what was at stake during budget negotiations. Yes, lawmakers successfully funded the government, but they considered a measure that could have threatened our entire medical supply system and the patients who depend on it. I’m talking about a tax on pharmaceutical wholesale distributors, a little-known entity in the healthcare supply chain.
The tax was intended to fight the opiod epidemic, but wouldn’t have done anything to lessen addiction or reduce either the number of legitimate medications prescribed or drugs on the black market.
Wholesale distributors do not manufacture, dispense or prescribe opioid medications, and have no control over supply or demand. So how would a tax on distributors chip away at addiction and the overall epidemic?
Fortunately, the tax measure failed. However, when lawmakers go back to Frankfort, they must consider real, effective solutions that address the real causes of this public health crisis.