Bad Appointments to Board of Health

There should be someone with medical education and belief in proven medical science on that board

By Joan Driscoll

Flathead County commissioners Pam Holmquist and Phil Mitchell have now endangered the most vulnerable citizens of our communities. The appointment of a doctor who refuses to recognize the scientifically proven benefits of herd immunity is a threat to my family, my neighbors, and my community.

I refer to Annie Bukacek, who was recently appointed the Flathead Board of Health. Being a Flathead native, a health care provider, and a former member of the Board of Health, I believe I can say that Flathead County does not need an anti-vaccine, naysayer of personal health-care choice woman making decisions for us.

I have the highest regard for Drs. Wayne Miller and David Myerowitz who were recently removed from the BOH. Those two scientists, who I witnessed making informed decisions in the best interest of the public, have been replaced by a woman who does not believe science and a second woman who has a personal, commercial interest in the policies and decisions made by the board. I cannot support the appointment of Ardis Larsen any more than I can support the appointment of Bukacek.

Larsen’s business depends on inspections performed by the department, which she will now oversee. Will she not have to recuse herself from any decision and/or vote on issues that may affect her business in the future?

It is utterly unacceptable that Bukacek is now the only health care professional on the board. While the other board members are fine, thoughtful, dedicated people, there should be someone with medical education and belief in proven medical science on that board. Will Bukacek ever approve funds to increase the rate of vaccination?

Yes, Commissioner Holmquist, this is a very “big deal.” Mitchell should not seek reelection in 2020 and Holmquist’s term cannot end quickly enough.

Joan Driscoll, NP

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