I recently had the opportunity to meet with Hospital Commission candidates, Barbara Sharp, Bill Williams and Monica Harrington at a hosted candidate coffee. It was a comfortable way to meet each of these candidates and get to know them and what they are all about. I was so encouraged after meeting this dynamic trio that these are the 3 pieces to the puzzle we’ve been missing, found them. What a serendipitous collaboration of knowledge and expertise that they would offer this community as the new hospital commissioners.
I am an ER Nurse and use to work for Inter Island Medical Center. Since 2006 I have worked at Island Hospital in Anacortes. I’ve been following Monica Harrington since 2012 about the time I learned about our situation with Peace Island Medical Center and the 50-year contract, all the buried restrictions to women’s healthcare and death with dignity, etc. But wait- there’s more. You know what, you could ask Monica and she would have an answer for you and she could probably tell you what page it’s on. Here is her website. I feel so fortunate to have someone on this island that is as passionate as she is to ensure our community is well represented in healthcare accessibility. But I am a realist, and I don’t think that Monica, even as passionate and knowledgeable as she is, can do this alone.
Ok, back to the candidate coffee where I got to know Barbara and Bill for the first time. Barbara is a retired lawyer. She understands the law, knows how to read it as it pertains to the contract and the laws we’ve already enacted in Washington State, like death with dignity and women’s right to reproductive care. Who would not like to have a lawyer on their team? You can learn more about Barbara here. Bill impressed me with how easy it was to talk with him and how much experience he is bringing to this group as a past healthcare administrator and served in the MASH unit in Korea. Check out his resume. He reminds me of my favorite neighbor who is always looking out for me.
The best part is these three candidates are offering to work together and work with Peace Island Medical Center/Peace Health with the goal of providing for this community’s healthcare availability, fairness in cost so it matches the standards, and they are offering us transparency of our tax dollars. I want to know that my tax dollars are going towards the accessibility to the health care we need. The one thing they all echoed is that they aren’t out to “fight” this dilemma we have with Peace Health, they are ready to roll their sleeves up and figure out a way, negotiate, mediate along side Peace Health and come at solutions that best meet the needs of this community. It’s truly brilliant.
I am encouraging you to take a look at these candidates, their opponents and get to know them, find out what they are about and what they have to offer. Ask them the questions that have been unanswered in your mind. And most of all please fill in your ballot and vote. Make your voice heard.
Shannon Dean RN BSN CEN