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Whidbey General works with anger
On May 5 another venomous Whidbey General Hospital message left the keyboard of public relation’s Trish Rose on route to all employees. This time her wrath’s targets were the Whidbey News-Times and a local land owner, Dr. Richard Wagner.
Her tirade was sparked by the News-Times’ opinion page feature comparing Dr. Richard Wagner’s opinions on the WGH bond measure to those of a local physician, Dr. Roof. She portrays Dr. Roof, a contract hospital employee who supports the bond, as a man with concrete knowledge about what is needed to provide quality healthcare. Dr. Wagner, having committed the sin of disagreeing with Ms. Rose, is described as “not a practicing physician, belonging to an organization that “often provides care on dirt floors,” and whose views are “consistent with the uninformed perspective we often see in the WNT.”
His specific crime is opposing the higher taxes that would be brought by the bond’s passage. Past comments in local papers’ opinion sections have Ms. Rose telling those who disagree with her that they just don’t understand the issues. She’s asked some to remove their comments and there was one time when she emailed an admonishing message to a letter writer at their home.
At most institutions this behavior would not be tolerated but WGH CEO Tom Tomasino allows it to continue. But look at his record. Last December he had a fit of anger at a board meeting because an employee complained that WGH was aware they’d been underpaying overtime for years and yet hadn’t (still haven’t) made restitution to employees. Again when a letter writer voiced his opinion about the emergency department’s medical director leaving, Mr. Tomasino was livid.
It seems to be the Whidbey General way. So what you see with Ms. Rose is what you also get with Mr. Tomasino. What they should not see or get is our $50 million.