Support the public hospital district | Letters

I can still vividly recall the grace, wisdom and kindness of my pediatrician, Dr. Hochman, whom I saw up until my teenage years. Playfully teasing my mother that she must be spoiling me, he would listen intently and with great respect to what she and I had to say, trusting both the innate wisdom of the mother and the experience of the patient. He knew me from my earliest days of life, a trait common to the loyal patients in his practice.

Now that I have given birth to my son, the potential lack of this continuity of care looms large. Will the health care system on Orcas remain stable enough for him to have the same practitioner for 15 years? Will I have reliable access to women’s health care? As a working-class family, what will we be able to afford in the years to come?

Without delving into the politics of the national debate over health care, I would venture to say that the majority of islanders believe their neighbors ought to have access to quality health care, with access to urgent care 24 hours a day, regardless of socioeconomic status. This is the essence of the proposed Public Hospital District on Orcas, an initiative I strongly support. While the country may be embroiled in chaos at the national level, let’s take a stand for our values at the local level. Please vote “Yes” in support of the PHD in April.

Caitlin Herlihy Leck

Orcas Island