Letters to the editor, March 29

Mar. 28, 2014 @ 10:51 AM

Home health benefit cut hurts seniors, affects jobs
Seniors across North Carolina rely on the Medicare home health benefit to receive clinically advanced, cost-effective and patient-preferred care at home.
Despite the many benefits of home health, the Obama administration imposed deep cuts of 14 percent on the Medicare home health benefit on Jan. 1, which data show will have devastating consequences on our state's Medicare beneficiaries, small businesses and jobs.
Recent analyses demonstrate that every state - including North Carolina - will experience job loss and business closures due to the Medicare home health cut. As a result, the Medicare program's most vulnerable patients could lose access to quality skilled home healthcare.
Nationally, the home health community lost 3,800 jobs just last month according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the largest cut seen in home health in more than a decade. I fear that unless this cut is corrected - the Obamacare Medicare cut will cause thousands of additional jobs to be lost.
I urge our lawmakers in Congress to recognize the devastating effect this cut is having on seniors and jobs across our country, and work together to advance much-needed relief to the Medicare program's frailest patients and home healthcare professionals. We need their help to save home health.
Lee Dobson
Area director of BAYADA Home Health

Looking at the numbers on climate change
Robert Medred states in the The Herald-Sun that he is a meteorologist and that he has "never seen a scientific study documenting a claim that 97 percent of 'scientists' agree that mankind is responsible for warming the earth's climate."

I am not a scientist or a meteorologist, but I have a computer and an Internet connection. About 15 seconds of research using these tools reveals that that this study was conducted by the National Academy of Sciences, and published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, June 21, 2010. The academy questioned 1,372 scientists. It found that the 3 percent who were not convinced by the current evidence had an average level of expertise below their colleagues.
Moreover, these findings are echoed in official statements from The American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Chemical Society, American Geophysical Union, American Medical Association, American Physical Society, and indeed the American Meteorological Society, which in an information statement released Aug. 20, 2012, concluded that the "observed changes are beyond what can be explained by the natural variability of the climate" and that "the dominant cause of the rapid change ... is human-induced increases in the amount of atmospheric greenhouse gases."
J. R. Smith, Jr.

Granting driving privileges would reward criminal behavior
Congratulations!  The Herald-Sun has sunk to a new low with the recent editorial “Let undocumented drive legally.”
Rewarding criminal behavior with N.C. driving privileges will only increase the future infiltration of more “undocumented”(illegal immigrants), and further undermine the cherished rule of law that makes our country so great. 
If the “undocumented” were, according to your article, responsible for one out of every seven crashes, a responsible newspaper would seek to end this insanity. How many citizens of North Carolina have been maimed and killed by these “undocumented” drivers who should not be living here to begin with? Your editorial is drenched in the blood of their innocent crash victims.
Ed Weintraub 
Chapel Hill