LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Rhodes is good choice

I don’t know that I’ve ever cast an informed vote in a ECHD Board Election before. The people seeking those positions were just names on a ballot to me. That was until March 15. 2021, when I suffered a serious injury to my left arm and had to go to the Emergency Room. Prior to that evening, I had let it be known to my family that if I should contract the Covid-19 virus, please do not put me in the hospital. I did not want to be quarantined from my family and possibly die without a family member by my side. While this may seem a little extreme, it was happening to others my age – soon to be 80 years old.

I am fully aware that the CDC and WHO plus others in the medical arena felt this was the way to prevent the spread of the virus, but I wasn’t having any of it.

On the night of my fall, I was transported to one of the local hospitals where I spent about six hours getting treatment for my severely shattered shoulder. I was put into a treatment room and pain medication was administered before I was taken to x-rays. The hospital bed where I lay was positioned away from the wall and I could see no call device to summon a nurse if needed, but, fortunately, I have a loud voice and was able to make myself heard at the nurse’s station when I needed attention. One of the people attending to me told me they were really busy, which I suppose was an explanation of why I was sort of being ignored. I do not recall anyone coming into my treatment room and giving me their name or their function at the hospital so I can’t say that a doctor actually saw me in the Emergency Room that evening.

I was administered pain medication and at 4 a.m., they came in to assist me in preparing to leave the hospital. It seems that the hospital was fresh out of slings to protect my arm and a visit to the other hospital revealed that they did not have a sling either. The nurse took a bed sheet and fashioned it into a sling, to the best of her ability, and I was released to go home with a prescription for pain medication that we filled on the way home.

I’m still not sure what role the members of the ECHD play in the operation of the hospital but there has to be someone who has the oversight and authority to prevent this type of below par treatment of patients.

Now I’m interested in who serves on the ECHD Board! Having just recently met Kathy Rhodes, a candidate for the District 7 position on the ECHD Board, I begin to search out her qualifications to serve.

I found that Kathy, while not having a medical degree herself, was so steeped in family members who are Board Certified in almost every medical field imaginable, that her family tree reads like the Who’s Who in the American Medical Association Journal. As a 20 year cancer survivor, Kathy is also very well acquainted with the patient angle.

Kathy is co-owner with her husband, Eddy, of the family business which has enjoyed 45 years as a successful basin business. She will use that same business acumen to make sure future decisions made by the hospital administration are sound and fiscally responsible.

I don’t know a lot about Kathy’s opponent, Ben Quiroz, other than that during his previous run for the position on the ECHD Board, he met with a number of retired hospital employees and assured them that he would take up the issue of their lost health insurance. Consequently, he quickly garnered their support. After the election, when these retirees ask Mr. Quiroz why he was not acting in their behalf regarding the issue, he told them “things had changed.”

Indeed, they have, Mr. Quiroz, and that is why I think it is time for a change in who represents these retired hospital employees and the residents of ECHD District 7. That change is Kathy Rhodes and I whole heartedly support her in her bid for the District 7 spot on the Ector County Hospital District Board.

R. Jolene Hawkins