Letters to the editor on entitlement, letter carriers and dogs, dialysis funding
09/03/2013 12:00 AM
08/30/2013 6:40 PM
Not greed, envy, entitlement
It is not “greed” when an employee works a 40-hour week and expects to receive a livable wage in exchange. It is also not “greed” when a poor person seeks to feed his hungry children in whatever means are available.
It is not “entitlement” when an elderly person who has worked for 45 years or more expects to receive Social Security income from the system she has paid into all those years. It is also not “entitlement” when a human being, sick with a major illness, seeks access to decent medical care and desires to do so without the threat of bankruptcy hanging over his head.
It is not “envy” when a worker desires to be given an equitable piece of the company pie in exchange for her own assistance in feeding the profits of the company. It is also not “envy” when people demand accountability and transparency from corporate America when it comes to compensation paid to those owning/leading the company, particularly when said company is not humanely compensating those on the lower rungs of the ladder.
LEIGH CARLSON BURGESS
As the wife of a letter carrier who was bit badly several years ago by a dog, there are reasons why the U.S. Postal Service takes serious steps on loose dogs (“Try solving problem with Postal Service,” Aug. 19 Letters to the Editor).
Though it is inconvenient and annoying to lose the mailbox at the door, nothing compares to the costs involved when a carrier or other postal employee is forced to deal with the pain, agony and the discipline received because postal patrons don’t properly handle their pets.
Many times letter carriers will take small steps with their customers but also report problematic dogs to their supervisors. If they don’t report the dog and subsequently get bit by the dog, not only does the carrier have to deal with the pain of the bite but the discipline involved.
The Postal Service generally will go to the owner of the pet involved before anything is done. Only as a very last resort does the Postal Service stop home delivery service. This is done only when all attempts have failed and any intercession done by the neighbors also fails.
So the bottom line, in my opinion, is that, yes, postal customers should not have to have their mail delivered anywhere but their homes, but the Postal Service and the federal government should not have to pay for dog bites either.
As a home dialysis facility administrator at Wichita Dialysis Center, I care for 42 kidney failure patients who require dialysis to survive. My patients – who need dialysis to rid their bodies of deadly toxins – are fortunate enough to be able to dialyze at home, allowing them the flexibility to maintain full and active lives.
But I am concerned that not only their flexibility is at risk but perhaps even their access to dialysis altogether. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services recently proposed cutting Medicare reimbursement for dialysis care by more than 9 percent.
These cuts may force reductions in staffing levels and reduce access to additional services such as social workers, nurses or dietitians, and maybe even peritoneal, or home dialysis. Most frightening, however, is that clinics may be forced to close or consolidate, forcing patients to travel farther for their life-sustaining care. Kansas has nearly 2,648 citizens on dialysis served by just 48 facilities.
I urge readers to contact Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., and Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Wichita. Ask them to ensure that CMS maintain appropriate funding to continue providing life-saving care for our vulnerable Wichita residents.
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