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Saturday, November 28, 2020


Wake up Legislature!

Oct 19, 2020

To the editor:
In Sullivan County, the Chairman of the Legislature, Mr. Robert A. Doherty, has taken to publishing his very own newsletter.
In this month's edition, he congratulates himself on the transfer of the Care Center (county's nursing home) and the County's Certified Home Health Care Agency (CHHA) from the ownership of the county to a Community Development Corporation, which he plans to use to lease these entities.
Why does Mr. Doherty think this is such a swell idea, to outsource two of the county's best and most venerable health institutions? Basically, his agenda is to systematically dismantle any social or health services that aren't mandated, because they “burden the taxpayer.”
In reality, his project will have very little impact on our taxes, as the county will still bear the burden for the poor health of vulnerable residents. He also claims that putting the nursing home and CHHA “under new management” will not affect the quality of services or put county employees out of work.
Well, the first thing any new owner or leaser will do is fire the union employees and hire nonunion ones. NYSDOH regulations ensure that this can happen 90 days after the sale or lease has taken place (New York State Department of Health Regulations, Article 7, Section 763.11, Governing Authority.)
Meanwhile, Doherty's partisan attacks on the Department of Public Health will deplete our resources to deal with the pandemic while the legislators dazedly follow his lead, having voted 8 to 1 to allow this transfer with a half-baked resolution that they had only barely read and which hadn't been passed through any committees or was ever seen by the Director of Public Health.
The Sullivan County Legislators need to wake up and do their jobs to keep the few health resources and experts which the county has built up, painfully, over many years, to protect their vulnerable residents.

Lise Kennedy, RN, BSN, MS

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