Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Bi-County Health Comm'n To Meet October 17

According to RenewLV's Rachel Bradshaw, the Bi-County Health Commission will meet Monday, October 17 at 6pm at the Northampton County Government Center (669 Washington Street, Easton, PA) to hear the full presentation in favor of establishing a bi-county health department for Lehigh and Northampton Counties.

The Bi-County Health Comm'n is comprised of the combined county legislators of the Lehigh Valley, making it an 18-member Comm'n whose actions require a majority vote from both Northampton and Lehigh. Five members of Northampton County Council - Ron Angle, Barb Thierry, Bruce Gilbert, John Cusick and Tom Dietrich - will likely vote to end this idea unless the real beneficiaries of this proposal start making some financial contributions.

Despite all the claims about public health, and many of them are valid, it's never a bad idea to remember who is really behind both this idea and even that supposed grassroots group. RenewLV. It's the Lehigh Valley Partnership, our unelected aristocracy, who like puppeteers, do pull the strings of Council members and Commissioners.

We're being asked to pay County tax dollars to fund a project that essentially is designed to ease the burden on the emergency rooms at Lehigh Valley Hospital and St. Luke's. Thise hospitals are doing well and need no help. If they want to provide cash grants to Lehigh and Northampton County to pay the county shares of this project, the plan will pass. But if that does not happen, the Lehigh Valley Health Board is a dead man walking.


Anonymous said...,0,6581163.story

According to this article, it doesn't sound like they plan on giving away any money any time soon.

Jon Geeting said...

The "real beneficiaries" of this plan are people who need public health services, not hospitals. These are valuable services, and it is worth paying taxes for them. You are wrong about the hospitals benefitting. If anything, the hospitals have an interest in increasing the number of sick people they have to treat. It doesn't help them to reduce hospital visits.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Jon, The hospitals have an interest in treating people who can afford to pay, not the people with no money who flood their ERs. That costs them money.

There are some good ideas in this public health plan, but the real beneficiaries are the hospitals. That is why it is being promoted by the LVP, who couldn't care less about poor sick people. And the LVP controls "grassroots" RenewLV.

If the hospitals care, as they should, let them pay the County shares. They certainly can afford it.

Then we'll have what you want and really, what I want. And we'll see if it works.

Bur right now, this is a dead man walking.

Anonymous said...

Bernie- You're 2 for 3. Based on many of the blogs I read on a daily basis, that makes you above average.

You are correct about the BoH being "dead men walking". This is not the political nor economic time to be advocating for a health department.

You are correct about this being a good idea. It is.

You are wrong about the real beneficiaries being the hospitals. There's a small overlap between hospital health care and public health. Vaccinations,flu shots, pap smears, mammograms, etc. are examples where it makes sense for hospitals and public health entities to work together. These are areas where health care agencies are paid to provide individual, preventative services. Public health is looking at broader health concerns- why are there such high rates of diabetes, cancer, asthma, etc. in our area and what are the factors that contribute to the poor health of our community.

I don't blame some of the Health Commission for being opposed to a Board of Health. Both Counties are in bad financial situations, the economy is sputtering and the political environment is way to volatile. They don't need to point fingers and place blame. The Board of Health has worked hard. It's the right thing to do, but just the wrong time. If the Health Commission wants to kill it, they need to man up and take responsibility, not place blame on the hospitals.

Zorn said...

once again geeting shows his butt. this thing has been on major life support for years - pull the plug and get on with real issues

Anonymous said...

9.3% and 16%
Enough said.

Anonymous said...

Adding another level of bureaucracy to health care delivery seems like a very bad idea.

Anonymous said...

Anon 7:01- It's not another layer of health care. Health care = taking care of a person who is sick. Public health = finding things that made people sick and addressing them so less people get sick

Anonymous said...


There's an entire bloated federal department for that. I agree on local control - but only after we make the former, with it's waste and inefficiency, go away. Otherwise, it's another layer of what already doesn't work.

Anonymous said...

Will someone put a stake in the heart of this thing. At the very least, make it a referendum question.

The proponent's, unlike the Garcedale group, do not want to do that. It weas prosposed as a vote years ago but the Pool Trust and other Patrnership puppets knew people wpould vote it dopwm.

That is why partnership puppets like Dowd and Doghterty are supported and elected to vote for nonsense likle this.

End it now!!!

Anonymous said...

Some things simply just don't go away even after they are killed off. It is amazing how this thing keeps gaining some life despite the plug being pulled. How have we all survived to date without this so called Health Department? Another drain on the taxpayer.

Anonymous said...


See: Gracedale

That referendum would read: Do you favor a super government agency that would guarantee everlasting life and make sure poor people never suffer a sniffle?


Anonymous said...

To Jon Geeting:

Great! You can pay all of the extra taxes that you like. We are a small business owner trying to keep our heads above water in this economy. We have to struggle to pay for our own health care, need dental work that we can't afford and don't know if we'll have to end up closing our doors. We've always taken care of our own needs. Nonetheless, you are indicating that I should help to provide health care for everyone else too. We have taken people down on their luck into our home more than once, but that was our decision when we've been able to do it and have done it gladly. Tell you what, since you are so generous...feel free to pay my extra share of taxes too.

Anonymous said...

Public Health is good, but is this public health or organized health care imperialism?

I think the later. This characters read some sh*t and think it sounds like a good idea. They call it evidence based, the current all empowering buzz word.

Full of conventional wisdom and assorted facts and figures they hope to dazzle all involved. In reality I doubt if they have really thought "deep" enough about the issue in their pseudo scientific minds.

But ultimately like many of their projects, or should I say most, it will probably end up an absolute bust. So why bother? It just ain't going to be what they say it is anyway.

A lot of money will be spent, mostly public, with little ultimate contribution to the overall health either physical or financial of either county.

They love the process more than the product. That is where the money is made.

I would suspect ultimately they will even dilute the services that are already in place.

But who cares. By then they will be onto another pet project to pump around the social circuit.

I am sure many founders of popular trusts and foundations have almost scratched through their casket's lids trying to get out and ring the entrusted servant's necks.