July 18, 2006 Letters to the Editor

Killing prairie dogs illegal and senseless Regarding the June 30 CNJ report on prairie dogs: While the prairie dog is not on the endangered species list, the burrowing owl is, along with the black-footed ferret, both of which are protected by federal law. Prairie dog burrows provide homes for these and a variety of other […]

Benefit program deadline approaching

By Pete Domenici: Guest columnist The May 15 deadline for signing up for Medicare prescription drug benefits is quickly approaching and there are still thousands of New Mexicans, particularly low-income residents, who have not signed up. Because we built in extra compensations to help poor seniors, I strongly encourage them to act now to sign […]

Hospital to undergo more comprehensive survey

By Marlena Hartz: CNJ staff writer Plains Regional Medical Center was out of compliance with Medicare’s conditions of participation during a state inspection conducted in February, a spokesperson from the federal agency that regulates Medicare and Medicaid programs said this week. When the Department of Health visited PRMC last month, it was there to investigate […]

La Casa offers clarity on Medicare program

By Tony Parra: Freedom Newspapers La Casa de Buena Salud healthcare officials are offering enrollment help for those who have not signed up for the new Medicare prescription drug program. Debra Herman, pharmacist clinician and director of pharmacy services for La Casa de Buena Salud, said since the start of enrollment in the Medicare program […]

Drug program leaves consumers confused

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A Medicare prescription drug program that started Jan. 1 has caused nationwide problems as it seems to be creating consumer confusion, requiring people to choose from dozens of competing private insurance plans. (Staff photo: Eric Kluth) By Andy Jackson and Kevin Wilson Consumer confusion reigns as the new Medicare prescription drug program starts up. The […]

Social Security laying ground for conflict

By Walter Williams: Syndicated Columnist I cringe with disgust when I hear politicians say, “We’re doing it for the children.” What’s worse is so many Americans mindlessly fall hook, line and sinker for the hype. Judging by our actions, Americans could not care less for future generations, and future generations will curse us for it. […]

Prepackaged news crosses line into propaganda

Freedom Newspapers There’s been a flurry of concern recently about the use of “video news releases” by federal government agencies and by the Schwarzenegger administration in California. These taped presentations of information with a spin are packaged like a TV news report and sometimes are used by local TV stations in ways that blend seamlessly […]

Browser beware: Online nursing-home ratings misleading

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Certified Medication Aid Brenda Walker, right, visits Jewel Sasser at the Retirement Ranch. (Staff photo: Eric Kluth) By Mike Linn: CNJ news editor A government Web site that compares the quality of area nursing homes has been criticized for being too vague, poorly updated and sometimes displaying incorrect information. Officials say information on nursing homes […]

Congress should rethink Medicare with cooler heads

Freedom Newspapers So far as we know, there’s no precedent for a court invalidating a law because it was based on false or deceptive premises (perhaps because that could put half the laws on the books in jeopardy). But Congress really ought to consider rescinding the Medicare prescription drug benefit law it passed and revisiting […]

Medicare proposal does not consider long-term effects

Freedom newspapers T he congressional debate over Medicare — mainly centered on whether to add a prescription drug benefit to the health-care program for older Americans, although other issues are in play — almost looks like an inversion of the conventional wisdom. Republicans, including former House speaker and general gadfly Newt Gingrich, are pressing to […]