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LETTERS for July 25 issue

By Staff | Jul 25, 2013

Group looks to make Maui a ‘No Kill’ community

“No Kill” is a proven means to save more healthy and treatable animals entering the shelter system. There are over 130 communities nationwide that have implemented “No Kill” and are saving over 90 percent of their cats, dogs and other companion animals. Places such as San Francisco, California; Reno, Nevada; and Austin, Texas are “No Kill.” Of these, over 90 shelters are open admission.

Whereas no one, assumingly, wants to kill animals in the shelters, current practices at most Humane Societies are outdated, only saving around 50 percent of animals brought in. While most people look the other way – or don’t want to think about what really goes on – there are ways to change and save more animals.

Save An Animal.org is a group of individuals, animal welfare groups and tourists who believe it is time we stop ignoring this problem, getting rid of anything we don’t want to deal with, and step up to the plate. If you have ever owned a cat or a dog, or just want to do the right thing, then you need to get involved.

We all need to take responsibility for what is going on around us. We need to implement truly humane animal control, addressing abandoned animals, feral cats, backyard breeders, etc., and it needs to happen now.

To become a “No Kill” community will take work, but we believe that Maui’s residents and visitors are up to the task. We are asking everyone who cares about animals to get involved. Visit our website at www.saveananimal.org and find a way YOU can help save an animal and help Maui become a real humane society.

For more information, please visit www.saveananimal.org.



Road construction should be done at night

My wife and I had the unpleasant task of taking care of a doctor’s visit in Kahului on Thursday, July 11. The trip over there wasn’t too bad, only 60 minutes, but considering it was noon time, that was usual.

The ride home was a little different. From Kahului to approximately the Cannery Mall was okay. Then from there to Kaanapali Parkway, it took us 50 minutes, due to some lame construction that should not be done at 3 p.m. but at night, when there is NO traffic at all, not during rush hour.

My question is, what State Einstein made the decision to do this work during rush hour and not at night? Whoever the person is has no idea at all about traffic on the island of Maui.



Move if you don’t like cane smoke

So many letters complaining about cane burning smoke again. Is it a fact that ALL of them are from newcomers (less than 50 years) who live in a resort area and were never informed about the smoke by their real estate agent?

There are so many places that they could be living on Maui – if that’s what they want to do – that do not have cane burning smoke. I’m not positive, but isn’t it every two years that a cane field is harvested? Some years ago, I lived in Waikapu, where we had cane smoke. My attitude was “No can help” – people gotta work.

Now, there are something like 800 people working at HC&S, who would be put out if it had to shut down by these complaints from people who “came from someplace else.”

A short while ago, there were a few letters complaining about dust from the bare fields that had recently been harvested. I went to school in Omaha, Nebraska, and rode the bus to the West Coast several times. Funny thing is that the dust there from the recently plowed fields waiting to be replanted is the same as it is here.

Did any of you complain about that dust? Oh, you weren’t there? Too bad that you came here then.

So many plantation workers sent children to college on what they make here. So many children of plantation workers went to fight in wars during my lifetime that I would prefer to tell you to go back to where you came from, or else move to somewhere on this island that does not have cane smoke. You now live in Kihei or Wailea? Too bad, but you’ll just have to move somewhere else. Enough said.



Government handouts hurt prosperity

It seems most people have gotten it wrong over and over. Mr. Kirsch’s letter in the Lahaina News dated July 11, 2013 alludes to the United States of America as a democracy. WRONG! The United States of America is/was (depending on how you look at it) a Constitutional Republic.

The Constitution and Bill of Rights protect ALL people, whether they are majority or not. A democracy is the rule of the majority.

So the people who have worked hard for their prosperity HAVE to share it with those who don’t work hard for it? They’ve tried that. It doesn’t work. See the U.S.S.R., Eastern Bloc Europe, and study history. The answers are not stealing from one and giving to another while lining the pockets of those who are supposed to decide who gets what.

We will never enjoy the prosperity that Mr. Hirsch hopes for as long as the current banking system of fiat money is in place, and handouts of free money by social programs rob people of their incentive to work. Why work when you can get free money?

So the utopia of equal prosperity for all is a nice thought to think about, although in practice it’s failed many times. So the choice today is indebted to the banks or dependent on the government; anybody who can get ahead is penalized.



What home health services does Medicare cover?

Medicare covers a variety of health care services that you can receive in the comfort and privacy of your home. These include intermittent skilled nursing care, physical therapy, speech-language pathology services and occupational therapy.

Such services used to be available only at a hospital or doctor’s office. But they’re just as effective, more convenient, and usually less expensive when you get them in your home.

To be eligible for home health benefits, you must be under a doctor’s care and receive your services under a plan of care established and reviewed regularly by a physician. He or she also needs to certify that you need one or more home health services.

In addition, you must be homebound and have a doctor’s certification to that effect. (Being homebound means leaving your home isn’t recommended because of your condition, or your condition keeps you from leaving without using a wheelchair or walker, or getting help from another person.)

Also, you must get your services from a home health agency that’s Medicare-approved.

If you meet these criteria, Medicare pays 100 percent for covered home health services for as long as you’re eligible and your doctor certifies that you need them.

For durable medical equipment (like a walker, wheelchair, or oxygen equipment), you pay 20 percent of the Medicare-approved amount, after you pay the Part B deductible ($147 in 2013).

Skilled nursing services are covered when they’re given on a part-time or intermittent basis. In order for Medicare to cover such care, it must be necessary and ordered by your doctor for your specific condition. Medicare does not cover full-time nursing care.

Skilled nursing services are given by either a registered nurse or a licensed practical nurse under an RN’s supervision. Nurses provide direct care and teach you and your caregivers about your care. Examples of skilled nursing care include: giving IV drugs, shots, or tube feedings; changing dressings; and teaching about prescription drugs or diabetes care.

Any service that could be done safely by a non-medical person (or by yourself) without the supervision of a nurse isn’t skilled nursing care.

Physical therapy, occupational therapy and speech-language pathology services have to be specific, safe and effective treatments for your condition.

Before your home health care begins, the home health agency should tell you how much of your bill Medicare will pay. The agency should also tell you if any items or services they give you aren’t covered by Medicare, and how much you’ll have to pay for them.

This should be explained by both talking with you and in writing. The agency should give you a notice called the Home Health Advance Beneficiary Notice before giving you services and supplies that Medicare doesn’t cover.

For more details on Medicare’s home health benefit, read the booklet “Medicare and Home Health Care” online at www.medicare.gov/publications/pubs/pdf/10969.pdf.

DAVID SAYEN, Medicare’s Regional Administrator for Hawaii