Support and improve HR3

HR 3, the Lower Drug Costs Now Act recently introduced in Congress, has been so needed for so long. Drug prices and Big Pharma profits keep increasing, while Americans all bear the price (literally and figuratively). HR 3 would allow the federal government to directly negotiate lower prices with private companies in Medicare’s prescription drug program.

Like all works in progress, there are features of the bill that need to be strengthened before it reaches the House floor in mid-December: Include people without insurance coverage, negotiate prices on more drugs, and protect patients from high launch prices and price spikes.

Mr. Walden’s assertion in his recent news release that controlling drug costs via price negotiation “will drive out innovation and result in fewer cures” is a view bought and paid for by the pharmaceutical industry’s “donations” to Mr. Walden and his Republican colleagues. It is a slap in the face for Walden’s constituents whose “cures” are already compromised because they can’t afford their meds.

I’m hoping Mr. Walden and his colleagues in Congress will finally act on their constituents’ behalf rather than on behalf of their Big Pharma “donors,” and support and improve HR 3. My doctor’s advice and prescription can’t help much if I can’t afford the prescription. Mr. Walden may be a “lame duck” now, but he is still controlling my access to healthcare.

Cindy Allen

Hood River

An evil organization

The letter, “False Walden report,” by John Hlavek in the Nov. 27 Hood River News needs a response. He stated that, “Walden voted to cut thousands off reproductive healthcare that would restrict care for more than 72,000 men, women young people, including HIV and STD tests, breast and cervical cancer screenings, birth control and basic reproductive care,” (whatever that means). These services are available through private providers and with Oregon Public Health.

Mr. Hlavek further states that he (Walden) “voted to roll back care for millions of patients in this country who rely on high-quality, compassionate care from Planned Parenthood.” Since when is the murder of innocent, unborn babies compassionate care for them? The main reason for abortions is that the baby would be inconvenient.

According to Leana Wen, M.D., Planned Parenthood’s new president, “First, our core mission is providing abortions, protecting and expanding reproductive healthcare … it’s a fundamental human right and women’s lives are at stake.” How about the babies’ lives?

Planned Parenthood reported a decrease in various service (breast exams, Pap smears, cancer screenings and prevention procedures, well-woman exams, provisions of birth control information and services, and adoption referrals) in 2017-2018.

For 2018, $563.8 million was received from taxpayers, which had increased from $543,7 million in 2017.

So, I strongly support eliminating any taxpayer money, at all, going to Planned Parenthood. I think that is an evil organization!

Donald Rose

Hood River


Editor’s note: According to Planned Parenthood’s 2017-2018 annual report, $563.8 million of Planned Parenthood’s revenue for 2017-2018 fiscal year came from Government Health Services Reimbursements and Grants and amounted to 37 percent of their $1,459.6 million total revenue. Government Health Services Reimbursements and Grants amounted to $543.7 million for the 2017-2018 fiscal year, 34 percent of Planned Parenthood’s $1,665.1 million total revenue for that fiscal year. Affiliate medical services data for 2016 and 2017 shows that Planned Parenthood provided a total of 9,537,592 individual services to clients in 2016 and 9,687,070 in 2017 (clients can each receive multiple services).

Merry Xmas

I get sad when modern so-called Christians turn into persecuted, sensitive snowflakes over the term Xmas. The origin of Xmas was taught to me during Catholic Sunday school in my childhood long ago. In the earliest days, Christians sometimes suffered horrible persecutions, as in spectators gleefully paying good coin to watch the faithful get thrown into a pit so bloodthirsty lions and tigers could rip them to shreds.

Back then, a weary believer, hoping for a safe place to eat, pray, and sleep, looked for a house with a crude, inconspicuous “X” near the door, for that “X” indicated that the residents were fellow followers of Jesus, and the traveler could safely break bread, share wine, and pray to their God together.

So, I will always use Xmas to honor the memory of those early Christians, who stayed strong in the faith despite the lions and tigers (and all the lesser persecutions).

Jeff Zipfel

Dallesport, Wash.

‘Blank checks’

Some recent letters supporting the president and his top people give them a blank check for every single inappropriate word, Tweet and decision. It is the same degree of infallibility typically reserved only for the Pope and murderous dictators.

At the same time, a blind eye is turned away from every single first-hand account of illegal action, racist, and disregard for many Americans, even when Trump’s own hand-picked people make the claims. If parents gave their own children that kind of unconditional support, we could end teen pregnancy as well as drug and child abuse in a week.

Steve Kaplan

Hood River

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