It is with great chagrin that I note the symbolism your magazine chose to depict the growing influence of physicians and groups of physicians in the redesign of the American healthcare delivery system ("Outgunned," Nov. 17, p. 38). I strongly object to the violent nature of your depiction of that influence in the form of a handgun.
Threats and violence are clearly not what is needed by our patients nor intended by the physicians who have dramatically changed their lives and practice styles to come together on behalf of our profession and our patients to positively influence the healthcare reform debate.
What more of an insensitive and insulting way to recognize this effort than to portray it as an attempt to "hold up" or threaten the other important parties in this critical debate.
William J. Arnold, M.D.
Executive vice president and medical director
Board member, Advocate Health Care, Oak Brook, Ill., and Allina Health System, Minnetonka
I looked with disbelief at the cover of the Nov. 17 issue, with its prominent image of a handgun. I'm saddened to think that a publication that is as widely read as yours would choose to promote images of violence and confrontation -- in the context of healthcare, of all things.
It seems to me that healthcare professionals, whatever their role, have an obligation to society to foster the reduction of violence, not to promote it. Although your staff might have felt this was a clever metaphor, there are many other ideas that could have been employed to illustrate the competitive forces between physician networks and health plans.
Senior health policy analyst
Ann Arbor, Mich.
Are the editors of your fine magazine ready to plead temporary insanity for the frightening choice of a handgun to illustrate your Nov. 17 cover story ("Outgunned," p. 38)? If so, I'll let pass the incredibly inappropriate image for a publication catering to healthcare providers. Did you forget that violence, especially violence perpetrated with handguns, is one of our leading public health [email protected]
Vice president of home health and hospice services
Melrose-Wakefield Hospital and Whidden Memorial Hospital
What an astounding choice of images for the cover of your Nov. 17 issue. Is your concept of marketplace competition so impoverished that you can convey it only with the picture of a [email protected]
I would expect a more sensitive approach from a leading healthcare publication.
Assistant administrator of government programs
Group Health Cooperative of Puget Sound
I'm writing to express my outrage regarding the cover graphics for the Nov. 17 issue. A pointed gun with a finger on the trigger does not belong on the cover of a prominent, highly respected healthcare publication.
Health professionals throughout our nation are fighting daily to stop the violence that has gripped our society. Use of firearms contributes significantly to such violence. Your cover sends the wrong message.
Nathaniel Wesley Jr.
School of allied health sciences
Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University