Be vigilant in coverage of CHI/Franciscan

It’s good to see front-page coverage of what some are calling a “Catholic takeover” of North Kitsap’s medical services, especially the West Sound’s only major hospital.

Please note that CHI/Franciscan — Catholic Health Initiatives — hasn’t just bought “our” hospital. It has also bought-up many or most of North Kitsap’s medical clinics and other significant local medical services.

Any nonviolent religious group should certainly be free to practice their beliefs as they see fit. However, they should not be free to inflict their religious views — or prejudices — on others. CHI/Franciscan well may now prohibit physician-assisted suicide (legal under very limited circumstances), prohibit legal abortion services, and perhaps even impose that new owner’s religious views on all family-planning services.

I hope the Herald and its sister publications will continue to give the ramifications of this healthcare “takeover” vigilant coverage. It can easily be crucial for any of us.

Jim Warren