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Opinion: Cutting Porter RN's not the right way to save money

Posted on February 4, 2016 |
By Ellen Oxfeld



The news that a number of registered nurses will be laid off at Porter Hospital is disturbing. Porter Hospital obviously plays a very important role in our community and the wider area. RNs are on the front lines and give us advice about medications and treatment when we need it — they cannot be replaced by people with less training. How can we feel confident that we will receive safe patient care if and when we need it if staffing levels of these important providers are reduced at Porter Hospital?

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Opinion: U.S. must work with its adversaries to counter ISIS

Posted on December 14, 2015 |
By Ellen Oxfeld



The president understands that the United States cannot commit to ground wars and decades more of occupying foreign lands. It will lead to further insurgencies and draining military commitments. But on Sunday night he did not outline an alternative to counter the threat posed by ISIS and similar groups.

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Opinion: Cutting health care benefits is a bad alternative

Posted on November 19, 2015 |
By Ellen Oxfeld



Recently there has been some controversy over the decision at Porter Medical Center to no longer provide health care benefits to workers, including nurses, who are employed over 20 hours per week, but under 30 hours. The argument at first glance sounds compelling; we in Addison County benefit from having a medical center in Middlebury, and Porter needs to trim extra expenses in order to keep its doors open.

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Opinion: Sanders prevailed in debate by offering clear solutions

Posted on October 22, 2015 |
By Ellen Oxfeld



Many commentaries after the Democratic debate have pointed to Hillary Clinton’s debate performance by noting her rhetorical flourishes and mannerisms. However, in my view Hillary Clinton did not win the debate, unless one thinks one can win a debate by sidestepping and not being specific about how to address critically important issues.

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Opinion: The long fight for a single-payer system is not dead

Posted on January 7, 2015 |
By Ellen Oxfeld



Gov. Shumlin’s decision to suspend moving forward on the financing package for single payer in the coming legislative session does not mean that the dream of health care as a public good in Vermont is dead. At his press conference announcing his decision to not pursue single-payer financing in 2015, the governor stated that “now is not the right time.” But he also made clear that Vermonters must not abandon the goal of universal publicly financed health care stated in Act 48.

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Opinion: Heath care effort must proceed

Posted on December 16, 2014 |
By Ellen Oxfeld



In the wake of the upcoming legislative session, and anticipation over the release of a financing package for a single-payer health care system in Vermont, many have asked why we need a publicly financed health care system in the first place. They wonder why we passed Act 48 in 2011, and ask if there might not be another why to get to universal health care — such as 100 percent enrollment in private insurance. In short, why do we need a publicly financed plan and why did the Legislature pass Act 48?

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Opinion: Single-payer no Medicare threat

Posted on November 6, 2014 |
By Ellen Oxfeld



Recent letters and news stories have expressed the fear that a Vermont based single-payer system would be a threat to Medicare. This is simply untrue and here is why. The law that set Vermont on the path to single payer specifies on its very first page that Green Mountain Care will cover all Vermonters “regardless of income, assets, health status, or availability of other health coverage.” Also, federal law does not allow for any state to take away Medicare or change Medicare benefits for seniors.

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Opinion: Nuovo, Sheldon would make great legislative team

Posted on October 8, 2014 |
By Ellen Oxfeld



There are many reasons to support Betty Nuovo and Amy Sheldon in the coming election for state representative from Middlebury. One reason is that both Nuovo and Sheldon have already demonstrated their commitment to the town of Middlebury through their many constructive contributions over the last two decades.

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Opinion: Single-payer plan is simpler than state's current model

Posted on August 22, 2014 |
By Ellen Oxfeld



There is a three-way race for two seats for state representative in the Democratic primary in Middlebury this year. I would like to urge voters to choose Amy Sheldon and Betty Nuovo for these seats on Aug. 26.

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Opinion: Candidates earn support for backing single-payer

Posted on July 21, 2014 |
By Ellen Oxfeld



There is a three-way race for two seats for state representative in the Democratic primary in Middlebury this year. I would like to urge voters to choose Amy Sheldon and Betty Nuovo for these seats on Aug. 26.

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