Letters to the editor for Saturday, Nov. 9, 2014
Decision wasn’t community based
Ed Epperson, president and CEO of Carson Tahoe Health, recently released a lawyer-generated and politically correct statement regarding the decision of CTRMC to discontinue allowing sexual assault exams to be conducted in the Carson facility.
Mr. Epperson stated that this decision is indeed not financially based. He claims that there are many “misinformed statements” regarding this decision. I find many of those in his statement.
Mr. Epperson claims that the decision is based partly on the fact that Carson area only has a “handful” of sexual assault victims that require an exam. I would like him to clarify “handful.” What is a handful? Two? Three? Four? In my experience a handful (terrible term to be used here, but I digress) refers to what you can pick up in your hand. Is that my hand, your hand, or Grandpa’s hand?
There is a wonderful group of volunteers (I believe these would be the “personal advocate” Mr. Epperson refers to — not someone on staff) who are on call 24/7 and respond at a moment’s notice to be with every victim of sexual assault. Here are some numbers for you. In 2013, these volunteers responded to 77 accompaniments. This refers to when a victim shows up at the hospital or sheriff’s office. Of those 77, 20 of these survivors required an exam. Twenty. I am not familiar with Common Core, but the math I grew up with says it would take four hands to make 20. That equates to 1.6 exams per month.
CTRMC is a private entity. It is a business. It can make the choice it feels it needs to make, but don’t let it fool you with prepared statements. This decision is very harmful and may deter survivors from following through with the exam that provides crucial evidence. I encourage you to be informed. Talk to those in the community who really know what is going on. CTRMC has been approached by many city and county officials about changing its position on this. It’s not a community based decision.