Letters to the Editor

Letters to the editor for July 20

How to submit a Letter to the Editor

The Olympian editor Dusti Demarest explains the guidelines for submitting a Letter to the Editor to the newspaper.
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The Olympian editor Dusti Demarest explains the guidelines for submitting a Letter to the Editor to the newspaper.

ObamaCare must be strengthened not weakened

We have two punk Senators from sparsely populated states, North and South Dakota, trying to help eliminate ObamaCare. These two states, as well as Wyoming, have fewer people than about 65 counties across the country. I would argue that these Senators have no standing in this debate because they represent so few people. In fact these states probably do not meet a threshold to constitute keeping them as individual states .Puerto Rico, whose residents are American citizens but cannot vote in federal elections, needs to be considered for statehood since its population exceeds the aforementioned states.

Furthermore, since these and other Senators really need to understand how health care works (or does not) in this country, I propose that all federally elected and appointed officials be given the Medicaid plan in their home state or district. They will then perhaps learn about rationing and how hard it is to find a specialist willing to see them or their family members.

My family depends on ObamaCare and I resent people who have great health care at taxpayer expense trying to eliminate mine.

M.E. Olson, Olympia

Opioid deaths set to decline

It appears the death rate by accidental overdose is declining in America. There were 8,400 deaths per year in 1990, before the escalation of opioid use, according at a Wall Street Journal article published in June. Since then, 870,000 people have died from accidental overdoses. It appears the new strict safe opioid prescribing regulations are working. The most recent numbers show 72,000 people died in November 2017, while only 69,000 people died in November 2018. If the trend continues down, we may be on the right track now.

I commend our legislators and Department of Health for leading the way. Death rates have declined because of more Naloxone prescriptions (a rescue remedy), safer storage and disposal of unused controlled drugs, better emergency department after care and because many at-risk people have already died.

The death rate is also declining because many clinicians refer patients to specialists who follow safe prescribing regulations. Accidental overdose includes those people who are not using street drugs.

In many practices, including mine, compassionate care helps people taper off alcohol and sedatives that, when used in combination, account for a large number of OD deaths. In order to maintain the downward trends, I believe all prescribers need to follow safe opioid prescribing regulations. Sadly, this is not so and I believe further education of practitioners may be needed. I’m proud my staff and I are front-line warriors in the battle of opioid deaths, helping one patient at a time avoid opioid emergencies.

David Overton, Olympia
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