North Coast Journal




This is in response to "The Health Care Revolution" cover story (March) by Lisa Ladd-Wilson.

First, I would like to compliment the Journal and Ladd-Wilson for covering this important story. This controversial debate within the medical community will ultimately influence the health care of everyone who lives in Humboldt or Del Norte counties. It is important for consumers to join the debate and become part of the decision-making process.

While Ladd-Wilson did an excellent job of covering the issues and the many players involved, she reported inaccurately and incompletely about an important segment of the health care community: midlevel practitioners. The "Glossary of Health Care Terms" included with the article defines midlevels as "a nurse practitioner of family nurse practitioner (FNP)."

Please understand that the term "midlevel practitioner" refers to both nurse practitioners (NPs) and physician assistants (PAs). There are about 75 NPs and PAs in our community who provide primary medical care to hundreds of people every day.

In a side piece about the "Rosen-berg Report," the author calls midlevels "alternative practitioners." This is not exactly accurate. Midlevels are primary care practitioners who work closely and collaboratively with doctors and other health-care practitioners throughout the community.

The Humboldt Society of Mid-Level Practitioners counts both NPs and PAs as members. HSMLP is involved with all of the major committees that are debating options for managed care in Humboldt and Del Norte counties.

Midlevels are concerned about their place within a managed-care system. They are also concerned about preserving and improving the quality of medical care delivered to their patients.

Tim Haskett, MS,

Geriatric Nurse Practitioner

Vice President, HSMLP





Thank you for your broad coverage of the Tour of the Unknown Coast (cover story, April 1995). The tour grants bicyclists of all abilities an opportunity to have a fun, safe and challenging ride. I have watched it grow through the years and am proud to be a supporter.

To bring you up to date, the TUC is now owned by a nonprofit corporation. The board of directors unanimously appoint Larry Tubbs as the tour director.

TUC Inc. evolved out of concern by local bicyclists and sponsors that the tour needed to become an institution. It no longer depends on one person.

We bring together the strengths of several individuals to constantly improve the TUC. The board consists of members from a variety of groups involved in the tour including the Humboldt Cycling Club, Redwood Spinners, Velo Productions and sponsors.

Each year the board donates thousands of dollars to several nonprofit organizations. Last year we donated $9,000. This year we hope to donate even more to groups including HCAR, the Ferndale Repertory Theatre, Petrolia and Honeydew volunteer fire departments, and a fund for bicycle lanes.

The TUC is the highlight of the year for bicyclists throughout Humboldt County and beyond. It takes weeks of dedicated training in usually lousy weather to prepare for California's Toughest Century.

With the addition of the year's "Toughest times two," the challenge is even greater for the elite (craziest) riders. Despite the fame of the century ride, the largest participation comes in the shorter, fun rides.

It makes me smile to see the family groups, the class of 2000 and other pedal pushers out there for fun and fitness. That's what the TUC is all about.

Jan Dooley

Chairperson, TUC Board of Directors





Thank you for your article on the great Tour of the Unknown Coast.

I did want to make one correction. There was a section that indicated Larry Tubbs was not the race director in 1993. ... I do not recall having been asked this question or having answered it. I do not believe it is factually correct.

This aside, the Tour is one of the great events of Humboldt County.

John Corbett

General Manager, North Coast Co-Op





Bravo! "Down with the IRS" by Ron Ross (April) was a very timely piece.

You may be interested to know that Citizens for an Alternative Tax System (C.A.T.S.) is a grass-roots organization with a national headquarters in Manassas, Va., whose sole purpose is to replace the graduated income tax with a national sales tax. This bipartisan movement is really gaining momentum because we have all seen the absurdity of the tax code and felt the injustice of the IRS.

Parade magazine, which reaches over 30 million people across the country recently conducted a straw poll on the idea of replacing the income tax with a consumption-based tax. It received over 48,000 responses of which 97 percent were in favor!

Washington will not do it for us, and no congressman can do it alone. If you favor this idea, please write your elected representatives and call the toll-free number to learn what you can do to help (1-800-767-7577).

Mike Owen

Santa Rosa