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Commissioner offer his thoughts on hospital strife

Letters to the Editor


Everyone wants to know what the root of all the strife [at the hospital] is. The details of the answer are complicated and cannot be aired in public. The simple answer is trust, or lack of it. This lack of trust did not happen overnight but has recently grown to the point that there is no reasonable chance of an amicable resolution.

In the meeting on Dec. 26th, different citizens spoke up with questions and statements. Mr. Campbell stated that people should get together and work things out. It was not for lack of effort. In the end, the providers do not trust what administration is saying.

Mr. Bjorklund asked some very pointed questions, specifically why did I call for a vote of no confidence. The answer is simple, I do not trust Mr. Graham. I cannot share why I do not trust him, only that I have good reason not to. You, the community put your trust in me by electing me to this position. You trust me to do what I believe is right, whether it is easy or not, whether I like it or not. It is sometimes very difficult to do what you believe is the right thing. He also commented on Dr. Chaffee’s interview with The Star. I don’t see a problem with him speaking his mind; in fact, I generally agree with his statements.

Many stated “keep the doctors, let the administrator go.” I agree. Does that mean they are not competent? Not necessarily, it just means they are no longer a good fit for the team. I believe this is the issue here. Without trust, there is no basis for success.

On October 30th in email form, I advised the board that I felt the CEO and COO should be encouraged to seek employment elsewhere. The hospital has a much better chance of success by keeping our doctors and replacing administrators than it does the other way around. Whether we like it or not, whether we agree with it or not, that is the bottom line.

Geary Oliver


Douglas, Grant, Lincoln, Okanogan Public Hospital District 6

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