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Watsonville
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September 28, 2022

Letters to the Editor, Sept. 2

Proud to remain your community hospital

Dear Pajaro Valley Community,

It is an exciting and historic time for the Pajaro Valley. As a result of the dedication and support Watsonville Community Hospital received from this incredible community over the past several months, the Pajaro Valley Health Care District has successfully raised $65.6 million to complete its acquisition of the Hospital. Watsonville Community Hospital is now positioned to continue serving the region for many years to come, with the ongoing leadership of our new community-based board who understand the importance of continuing to deliver quality healthcare services to everyone in the Pajaro Valley.

This milestone was made possible by all of you—including the numerous individuals, elected officials, community businesses, associations, and partner organizations that supported us and our mission. We are deeply grateful for the assistance we have received, which now allows us to carry on our most important mission—providing quality, compassionate care to our patients. We also want to recognize and thank State Senator John Laird and Assemblymember Robert Rivas, who played critical roles in expeditiously passing legislation to establish the healthcare district and successfully securing funding from the state.

This achievement illustrates what is possible when a community rallies around a common cause and underscores how the people of the Pajaro Valley care for this community. As we move forward, we will continue our commitment to patient safety and good health at the forefront of all that we do.

Thank you, once again, for your support. We are proud to be your community hospital.

Steven Salyer, Chief Executive Officer, Watsonville Community Hospital

John Friel, Chair

Jasmine Nájera, Vice Chair

Tony Nuñez, Secretary

Marcus Pimentel, Treasurer

Dr. Katherine Gabriel-Cox, Member

Board of Directors, Pajaro Valley Health Care District Hospital Corporation Board

At last, hospital ownership returns to the Pajaro Valley

Thank you for your investigative articles exposing the sorry recent history of the ownership of Watsonville Community Hospital, which has served Pajaro Valley residents since 1895.

Our local hospital has suffered through ownership by three investment corporations, each of which created layoffs, reduced services and extracted as much profit as possible under the guise of “efficiency.”

Halsen Healthcare, Prospect Medical Holdings and Medical Properties Trust each had their go at cannibalizing our precious resource, putting profit over patients. This is, of course, the mandate of investment corporations—profit.

Because of the incredibly diligent work of many community members, it looks like our hospital will at last return to ownership by the community.

We have seen how profit motivated corporations nearly destroyed healthcare in the Pajaro Valley. Is it possible that private, for-profit corporations do not belong in the healthcare field at all?

Bernie had it right: Medicare for all!

Don Eggleston

Aptos

Control tower would improve airport safety

While I usually refrain from commenting publicly on aircraft accidents and feel that it is best left to the National Transportation Safety Board and other authorities, please permit me to express my opinion regarding the horrific mid-air collision between two airplanes at Watsonville Municipal Airport on Aug. 18.

Considering the amount of air traffic that uses Watsonville’s municipal airport I do feel that a control tower is warranted and would definitely enhance the safety of aircraft operations on this uncontrolled field. Furthermore there are different types of aircraft always in the pattern from corporate jets to light aircraft. Airspeeds differ, also IMC (instrument, meteorological conditions) weather and instrument (ILS localizer and DME) approaches are a factor. I could go on and on.

Back in the 1970s, a control tower was planned for the airport, and FAA funding was available. However, airport management and the city did not act upon it, deeming it was not necessary at the time.  

Our airport is a great asset to the community and the safety of those who use it is paramount. Thank you.

Gary V. Plomp

Gilroy 

ARTS & CULTURE

Inaugural Filipino American History Month festival to be held Saturday

WATSONVILLE—October is Filipino American History Month, commemorating the first recorded presence of Filipinos in the continental United States in 1587. The month was first...