Happy Birthday to Us!

Published March 1, 2002

Health Care News celebrates its first birthday this month! Like most infants, we’ve grown by leaps and bounds, thanks to the tender loving care and devoted attention of scores of parents, aunts and uncles, kissing cousins, and generous friends.

Why We’re Here

Health Care News was launched out of frustration with the way the general media addressed important public policy issues.

Explains Heartland President and CEO Joseph Bast, “Reading a typical daily newspaper, you would never know there is a major ‘tug of war’ taking place right now between those who want more government regulation of health care, and those who want less. Or that the past few years have yielded real data proving that heavy-handed regulation and increased subsidies lead to rising costs and less access to care … the opposite of what ‘progressive’ reformers promised.”

A Team Effort

I have found it truly gratifying to receive your emails and phone calls offering congratulations, support, and thanks. Many of you realize Health Care News is a team project … but for those of you who don’t, I’d like to call your attention to the many people who work behind the pages:

  • Heartland President Joe Bast is the visionary here. He keeps me focused not only on the big picture, but also on the key pieces to the puzzle. As importantly, he communicates the soundness of our vision and the righteousness of our approach to donors … without whom Health Care News would remain merely an idea.
  • Vice President Diane Bast, as editor of Health Care News, keeps my writing simple, accurate … and on deadline.
  • Publisher Nikki Saret sets the deadlines Diane enforces; pitches the newspaper to potential advertisers; and promotes the newspaper to subscribers at scores of conferences across the country.
  • Circulation Manager Latreece Vankinscott makes sure subscribers get what they’re supposed to get, when they’re supposed to get it. She also manages a strong, multi-tasking staff ready to assist anyone—subscriber, writer, advertiser, or even managing editor—with anything. My personal thanks to Toria Jones, Beola Leonard, and Cheryl Parker.
  • Greg Lackner, Heartland’s public affairs director, promotes Health Care News through Internet contacts as well as the mainstream media. He’s responsible for putting Assistant Editor Merrill Matthews, a Heartland senior fellow, “on the road” to promote health care reform at meetings across the country.

What You See

Health Care News benefits from the regular contributions of many of the reform movement’s brightest lights. Assistant Editors Merrill Matthews and Greg Scandlen, and contributing editors Grace-Marie Tuner, Tom Miller, Dewey Crepeau, Dr. Miguel Faria, Gerry Smedinghoff, and Twila Brase have all made valuable contributions to the publication’s content.

And then, of course, there’s the Heartland art department, which packages the stellar Health Care News content into a readable and compelling graphic presentation. Without the talents—and sheer hard work—of Art Director Kevin Fitzgerald and Design Assistant Jen Beranek, I wonder how many of you would even consider picking up the newspaper?

Last … But Certainly Not Least!

With all that appreciation I’ve just expended on my “supporting cast,” you might wonder if there’s anyone left to thank.

But of course there is … and that’s you!

Your support for this newspaper—your comments, your moral support, and your financial contributions alike—is, in the end, what keeps this whole enterprise going.

All of us at Health Care News have worked hard to earn your approval … and we will continue to do so. Please let me know whenever we fail to live up to your expectations (and, as importantly, when we exceed them!). I really do appreciate hearing from you. I’m easily reached by email ([email protected]), or by phone at 573/445-3023.