Letters to the Editor

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MULTICARE: Rich salaries are not ‘deserved’

Letter by Eugene Wiegman, Tacoma on Dec. 27, 2010 at 1:07 pm | 2 Comments »
December 27, 2010 1:32 pm

Re: “Millions for MultiCare CEO” (TNT, 12-21).

What is happening to good sense? The multimillion-dollar salary to the CEO of MultiCare is outrageous when considering what patients are paying for their insurance and out-of-pocket expenses.

The expenses for patients continue to rise every year at a rate much higher than inflation and have passed the breaking point for many. If the CEO, vice-presidents of hospitals and medical insurance companies continue to get this kind of compensation, health care will not be affordable for many Americans.

What was amazing in the article is that the salary for the CEO was defended by MultiCare’s chairman of the board, John Folsom as “well deserved.”

Nonsense. I have worked and supported Community Health Care for 41 years. It is a great community service. Executive Director David Flentge and the nurses, doctors and staff do an excellent job without salaries comparable to MultiCare’s.

While other community-minded health care providers are cutting staff and freezing salaries, these people are enriching themselves. As a pastor, I work with low- and middle-income citizens who are not able to make their bills, so medical costs must be viewed by these families as luxuries. Try telling these families that the salaries being paid at the executive level at MultiCare are fair. What is happening to the idea of public service?

(Wiegman, a Lutheran Church pastor and former president of Pacific Lutheran University, is a former MultiCare board member.)

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