Readers write, Oct. 9

HEALTH CARE

CDC critic is seeking to politicize research

Wayne Winegarden, senior fellow at the Pacific Research Institute, writes of his concern about the amount of resources devoted to disease prevention at the CDC, and the belief that some projects are motivated by political considerations, citing examples of alcohol studies (“Politicized studies just drain research money,” Opinion, Oct. 4).

While I think studies should be scrutinized thoroughly throughout the funding process, I find Mr. Winegarden’s position ironic. He accuses the CDC of politicizing its public health studies, while Mr. Winegarden is himself politicizing the public health process. Apparently, he isn’t satisfied with letting scientists be scientists.

Our world is complex, and parsing down causation is viable work that the CDC does, garnering a worldwide reputation in the process. I want the CDC there, looking at the vast web of the world in which we live, and letting the public know where risk lies. The CDC is part of the layer of protection we Americans are fortunate to have.

ANNE CHRISTOPHER, ATLANTA

Hospital should move to restore public trust

Where is the accountability in the case of Mea Watkins (“Patient to staff: ‘PLEASE wash your hands … Please,’” Metro, Sept. 29)? Has this hospital’s management initiated more rigorous training (with teeth for enforcement) of all personnel to protect patients from horrific infections?

Northside’s response as reported was an insult to this unfortunate woman. Hospital administrators owe the public a report on making needed protocol changes. A PR-managed statement by executives is pathetic. Maybe the day has come when patients need to mount their personal video cameras in hospital rooms to document future lawsuits.

Human error is always possible. Appropriate action helps restore trust.

TERRY BLACKWELL, ATLANTA

GOVERNANCE

Obama would rather antagonize than lead

The Republicans seem to have gotten all of the blame for the government shutdown. However, the Democrats are just as much to blame. The Republicans should not use the health care bill as a pawn for their demands. Then again, when you have a partisan health care bill pass into law (which excluded Republican input), what do you expect?

The real one “to blame” in all of this is our leader. President Obama should be attempting to bring the parties together, yet he would rather “stoke the fires” and antagonize the Republicans.

A leader is supposed to be a mediator: objective, and strong enough to guide both sides to a solution. Sadly, the United States does not have that kind of person in the White House.

E. ASHMORE, LAWRENCEVILLE