Skimming the Cream

I read the article about the grand opening of the the Cottage Healthcare System’s five star hotel—I mean hospital—in Santa Barbara. While all this extravagant renovation belongs in “Architectural Digest,” one cannot help but ask how this expense is improving the quality and access to health care in Santa Barbara or for its citizens. If the point is to draw patients from Beverly Hills and Cedars Sinai, okay, no problem. However, affordable access to acute care appears to be out of reach for the rest of us who actually live and work in this community. There is no competition in this town to create an open market and Cottage has a long way to go before it matches either the quality or affordability of Kaiser Healthcare. Interesting article? indeed! Meeting the health care needs of this community? Not in any way, shape, or form.

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