1. Stalzer, Sincerely Carol RN, CGRN

Article Content

To the Editor:


I was catching up on some reading and just read your editorial on healthcare reform in the September/October 2009 issue of Gastroenterology Nursing (Baker, 2009). I have been a member of the SGNA for 25 years and a nurse for several years longer. Yes, cost of care has increased, so has the cost of housing, food, movies, sport tickets, etc. But when we look at the technical advances made in medicine over the years, I think much of this cost is understandable (unlike the increases in the cost of housing, food, movies, sport tickets, etc., how much improvement has been made in these services?). Even if the public does not appreciate the medical marvels, surely anyone in the medical field will herald these advances. Over the years, I have also witnessed firsthand, as a gastroenterology manager, the additional costs that are incurred because of government regulations. Anyone who has gone through The Joint Commission survey will attest to this!!!!


I have yet to hear anyone from a country that has national healthcare speak positively about it. Many are warning us not to go down this road. If we do, three things are certain: National healthcare will cost more, there will be more waste, and there will be rationing (the recent new guideline for mammograms is an example). Look up the Web site for the Canadian Cancer Society and compare its screening for breast cancer and colon cancer with guidelines currently being practiced in the United States. It was not long ago here that a mammogram was not covered unless it showed a malignancy. Changing these guidelines surely is a step backward.


Your editorial challenges nurses to "push for healthcare reform." I feel that a better unilateral message would have been to challenge nurses to "become educated on healthcare issues" and work toward a goal of improving healthcare for all. Just because there is change, does not mean there will be improvement.


Sincerely, Carol Stalzer, RN, CGRN


GI Project Specialist




Baker, K. (2009). The voice of nursing. Gastroenterology Nursing, 32(5), 310-311. [Context Link]