Letters: Survey at Saint Louise ‘nothing new’; toll road is trade barrier; great visit by sister city guests; Romney: put America first

Government survey warnings to Saint Louise Hospital ‘nothing new’ – ‘it happens all the time’
Dear Editor,
I have been in the health care business for more than 20 years and have worked at a number of hospitals in this state and abroad. Every time the surveyors, state or federal, inspect a facility they find points of “non-compliance” and “deficiencies”. In fact it’s their job to find these issues. 
Just as a driver risks losing his/her right to drive if they do not comply with the rules of the road, hospitals must follow their own set or rules or risk penalty. When a surveyor finds a hospital out of compliance on something, there is the threat of federal/state funds being pulled. This is nothing new.
It happens all the time and at every hospital in the country. This is all part of the process that helps a hospital achieve excellence in patient care and safety. Why don’t your reporters report these facts? Why does the local paper here not support their only hospital? The reporting is so negative and full of doom that I believe you are doing your readership a disservice.
Do you ever consider celebrating the good work Saint Louise does on a daily basis? I see it from the front row. I’ve seen lives saved here. I see people made well here every day. Do you think we will see a front-page story on one of the very many wonderful successes achieved at Saint Louise? I notice on your home page that Hazel Hawkins has a banner advertisement on the top of the screen as well as a nice color advertisement in your newspapers. Have you reported on the surveys that have taken place at that organization? Have you reported the points of non-compliance and deficiencies that were discovered there? You may want to consider lifting your hospital up instead of beating it down.
It’s a good hospital with good people doing good work for the people of South County. Please take care of your hospital.  It’s the only one you have.
Kevin L. Doherty, RN, BSN, PHN, Morgan Hill,  house supervisor, Saint Louise Regional Hospital

Editor’s Note: We print the news. It’s our job. The readers can judge the severity of the facts. Regarding reporting that is only “doom” regarding Saint Louise, that is spectacularly untrue. Examples include:

  • A wonderful front-page feature story on nurse Lori Katterhagen who overcame a scary deafness to direct the medical, surgical and pediatric units.
  • A  story that detailed the hospital’s status as among the first in the country to offer a new, minimally invasive procedure for severe asthma patients known as Bronchial Thermoplasty.
  • A story about the hospital becoming  a Primary Stroke Center for South County residents – designated so by the Santa Clara County Emergency Medical Services Agency.

The list is quite long, which a quick search of our website will show. There are many people doing good work at Saint Louise, and we hope that continues for a very long time.

Transportation partnership  dissolved, but why did it take so long for officials to do it?
Dear Editor,
Reports of the termination of the unconstitutional joint power authorities’ Mobility Partnership came too late to save the money that they blew in chasing Santa Clara Valley Transportation Authority-San Benito County Council of Government’s nightmare for local taxpayers, motorists and truckers.
Why do our elected officials, appointed to the JPAs, fall for such ridiculous nonsense? A “toll road” is a barrier to trade, industry and commerce, and just the opposite of what the Central California Coast Region needs to dig out of the recession our leaders have dug us into.
Why did VTA-COG pull the plug on their infamous “Mobility Partnership”? Is it like His Honor said at the Gilroy Chamber’s Government Review Committee meeting, the idea is “crazy”? Or is it because taxpayers had to sue COG three times to get them to comply with the Brown Act? Instead of following VTA-COG and the other JPAs down the road to serfdom, why not consider some intermodal solutions like the one we used to have with SP-UP-CNW-PC “Salad Bowl Express” for our top tonnage movements?
With intermodal gains increasing despite the sour economy, our so-called authorities at the JPAs are missing the boat, and are back-slapping happy about it, too, just so long as we continue to pay into their public employee pension plans. Caveat viator.
Joseph P. Thompson, Gilroy

Sister city guests enjoyed a great visit to Gilroy thanks to the generous efforts of many

Dear Editor,
This past week, Gilroy Sister Cities Association was pleased to host visitors from two of Gilroy’s most active sister cities, Saint-Clar, France and Takko-Machi, Japan. Both groups were only here for a short time, but they were able to enjoy both the attractions of Gilroy and of course the Garlic Festival.    
Included in the Saint-Clar group was the president of their Sister Cities Association, Mrs. Renee Deniel, and her husband, and the mayor of Saint-Clar, Mr. David Taupiac, who has been a repeat visitor to Gilroy the past three years. This year also saw the new mayor of Takko-Machi, Mr. Harumi Yamamoto, attending, who was accompanied by the president of their Garlic and Beef Festival, Mrs. Mikako Sakamoto.
Also from Takko was Mr. Yoichi Nakamura from the Takko Town Office, Ms. Kanako Daibo, who is this year’s Garlic Lady for their Garlic and Beef Festival (equivalent to the Gilroy Garlic Festival Queen), and Ms. Yasuyo Takadate, who is both chaperone and interpreter for the Takko group.
Accompanying the Takko visitors was Ms. Mekala Sheedy, the current Coordinator for International Relations in Takko.
On their first day in Gilroy, the group was treated to a behind-the-scenes tour of Christmas Hill Park and the ongoing preparations for the Garlic Festival by Mr. Kurt Svardal. The visitors were very impressed by the work required to accomplish the Festival and by how quickly it was all getting done. Next was a visit to the Gilroy Museum, the new Gilroy Library, lunch at Station 55 and, after a few hours shopping at the outlets, were given a tour of City Hall and the police station.Their day ended with a welcome party at the Portuguese Hall.   
The visitors started the opening day of the Garlic Festival by joining in the Passing of the Torch ceremony and continuing on with a full day of enjoying the Festival. Their last day here was spent touring the local Gilroy area and included stops at Syngenta Seeds for a tour of the grounds, followed by a stop at Gilroy Gardens for tours and lunch, then on to Solis Winery for wine tasting and enjoying the excellent views.
After a drive through the agricultural areas east of Gilroy, their last stop was at Garlic World for a final round of shopping for garlic products. The Gilroy Sister Cities Association wishes to thank Mr. Kurt Svardal for volunteering his busy time to give us the tour of Christmas Hill Park; Syngenta Seeds for the guided tour of their grounds; Gilroy Gardens and especially Barb Granter for the wonderful tour and excellent lunch they provided; Solis Winery for their generosity; Mr. Joe Kline for the tour of City Hall; Captain Jim Gillio for the police station tour; and to everyone who came to the Garlic Festival and were so appreciative of meeting our Sister Cities guests.
Hugh Smith, president, Gilroy Sister Cities Association

Romney needs to put America first and not run the country from Tel Aviv or Jerusalem
Dear Editor,
Mitt Romney would like to suck up to the Israelis and come back with a lot of money and support. It’s easy to say that America has a solemn duty and a moral imperative to back up Israel with regard to Iran. But if Romney is going to be the president of the United States he has to learn that his first solemn duty is to America, and it is America, not Israel, who decides if we are going to war.
We have to make it clear to Israel, like Obama did, that if Israel wants America’s help then Israel has to accept America’s leadership and that America is run from Washington, not Tel Aviv or Jerusalem. America decides what wars we get into or don’t get into. And if Israel goes rouge then we will only back them up if it is in America’s best interest to do so.
Marc Perkel, Gilroy