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Continued: Readers Write (April 18): Boston explosions, health care mergers, Artability

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  • Last update: April 17, 2013 - 7:48 PM

It was definitely in Minnesota’s interest to interfere in this process.

Ken Stagg, Mounds View

• • •

I congratulate the state on protecting the small, private practices of individual physicians, the autonomy of the University of Minnesota Medical School, and patient choice.

Those who claim that the Sanford merger with Fairview would have created jobs should talk to the department heads who are fired, the doctors who are forced to sell their private small businesses to an out-of-state organization so that they can continue practicing medicine, and to the employees who take pay and benefit cuts when Sanford Health acquires a hospital.

Those who claim it would have improved patient care should have been with me when I visited a family member at a Sanford hospital: The room was dirty, the IV line and other tubes were on the floor, and a critically ill patient’s case was being managed by a physician’s assistant who neither remembered nor read the chart to find out that the patient had an ileostomy.

Despite the supposed efficiencies of a for-profit hospital, patient costs have not gone down — but Sanford’s advertising is everywhere, as is Sanford’s name and image. Minnesota’s attorney general did her job: She protected the people of Minnesota.

Mollie Madden, Farmington

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Initiative continues despite center’s closure

An April 16 article (“St. Paul losing drop-in center for mentally ill”) featured a client mourning the end of People Incorporated’s Artability initiative along with Ramsey County’s closure of the Apollo Resource Center. We’d like to clarify that Artability is not affected by this closure.

The Artability program began at Apollo in 1990 as a safe place for those with mental illness to create art with the help of local artists. Over time, it has grown and evolved into an arts program attracting more than 100 artists each year for a series of workshops, culminating in an annual art show and sale each fall.

For more information on Artability 2013, which is just getting underway, please contact People Incorporated’s Artability coordinator at 651-288-3532.

M. Tim Burkett, CEO, People Incorporated Mental Health Services

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