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Kokomo Tribune Newspaper Archive: August 14, 1994 - Page 1

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   Kokomo Tribune (Newspaper) - August 14, 1994, Kokomo, Indiana                                KHS swim coach Bob Croll retires Page B1 Vol 143 No 335 KOKOMO Kokpmo Ind Sunday Aug Health care woes Insurance is no guarantee of coverage By STEVE JACKSON Tribune staff writer Much of the current health care debate has centered on the prob lems experienced by those lack ing health insurance But as Gus tavo Roca discovered having insurance does not guarantee being able to receive care Despite being fully insured and having what turned out to be a lifethreatening con dition Roca a fairly new Kokomo resident found it nearly impos sible to find a physi cian who would treat him following a recent injury The experience left him feeling more than a little frustrated Its not as if I have a gripe against the whole Roca said following a five day hospital stay to remove a blood clot from nis ankle But when an injury occurs you just cant get a Roca injured his ankle in late July At first he gave the injury little thought figuring it was a simple sprain But when the ankle ana calf swelled to twice their normal size a few days later he became concerned After discovering that there were no doctors who could see him immediately Roca visited a local emergency room Xrays failed to show any broken bones or other trauma so he was told he would need to see a doctor On the advice of a friend he called a local clinic Instead of COUNTDOWN TO making an appointment for him clinic staffers probed Roca for information they said was neces sary to determine if he could become a patient there I told them this was an emer Roca said So they said I should go to the emergency room I said I already had been and needed to see a doctor now I was afraid something was going to happen As he later discov ered something seri ous could have hap pened The clot was lodged in his leg but if it broke free it could have killed him by blocking his heart or the blood flow to his brain Despite telling the clinic ne was facing an emergency Roca was told he would have to wait to see if he would be accepted He wasnt leaving him in pain and without a doctor in a potentially serious situation While he was able to eventually find a surgeon who identified and removed the blood clot which was plaguing him Roca was left disillusioned by the qual ity of care available from some area doctors This is one of the reasons the health care system is in debate The human element is he said Definitely Im not speaking about all doctors Im sure these are in a But there are doctors out there who just care about money and are very imper Gustavo Roca faced a major challenge to find a local physician Tribune photo by Tim Bath Glut of patients shortage of doctors By STEVE JACKSON Tribune staff writer Not being able to find a physi cian during a recent emergency left Gustavo Roca who has lived in Kokomo for about 18 months feeling frustrated with the lack of access into the local health care system new residents face Rocas frustrations are likely shared by many other new resi dents as the Kokomo area is faced with a shortage of primary care physicians We cannot possibly take care of all the people who call in and request to be said Jack Scherger executive director of Kokomo Family Care The load is just too great for our physicians to take a lot of new Many primary care physicians throughout the area are experi encing similar overloads The Kokomo area is one of several in Indiana designated by the federal government as a medically underserved area According to Adele Lash spokeswoman for the Indiana State Medical Association there are probably enough primary care physicians to meet Indiana s needs but they are too heavily concentrated in metropolitan areas leaving much of the state without enough doctors to meet demand We probably actually have enough physicians but the prob lem is she said If they spread out wed probably have what we Related stories Senators debate issue Page A2 Hoosiers unhappy with plans Page C2 The shortage of primary care physicians in the Kokomo area can be attributed to a number of factors including the increasing specialization of medicine But perhaps more important is the tact that several primary care doctors have retired recently exacerbating what had been a problem for some time Weve had a shortage for years but its getting Scherger said He estimated the Kokomo area is upwards of 10 doctors short of meeting demand That shortage has forced most clinics and doctors to use screen ing procedures like those Roca faced According to Theresa Oyler assistant administrator at Burlington Clinic in Kokomo it is standard practice for clinics in the area have prospective patients apply for admission to a clinic But the weight various clinics place on those screenings varies Scherger said Kokomo Family Care will take new patients on a very selective Burlington Clinic despite an active patient load of between and spread among seven doctors rarely turns down prospective patients Oyler said Our doctors come from the old she said They went into medicine to treat people You dont see that as much these To avoid being caught up in the physician crunch during an emer gency situation Scherger recom mends new residents or long time residents who do not have a regular physician develop a working relationship with a local doctor long before the need to see one arises Thousands are fleeing Rwanda KIGALI Rwanda AP Gov ernment leaders and officials fanned out through southwest Rwanda cut Saturday trying to stem the flight of more than 1 mil lion people fearing a new surge of killings Thousands were already reported fleeing toward the Zairi an border Aid groups shipped food shel ter and medical supplies to a camp in Bukavu in an effort to prevent a new refugee tragedy The exodus is expected to speed up as the Aug 22 deadline approaches for French troops to withdraw from their security zone in southwest Rwanda Emery Brusset a spokesman for the emergency office in Rwanda said it would be lucky if only 1 million people flee the Related story Rwandans leaving everything behii PagtA4 security zone in the coming week The French are supposed to be replaced by peacekeepers from African countries but many Hutus fear the new troops will be unable to protect them from Tutsi retribution The Tutsiled Rwandan Patriotic Front toppled the Hutu govern ment in early July after a 14week civil war in which as many as people were killed most in massacres of Tutsis and Hutu moderates Unconfirmed rumors of Tutsi revenge killings drove 1 million Rwandans to Goma Zaire in just three days following the RPF vic tory catching aid workers off guard Nearly people have died in Comas refugee camps of disease and hunger and officials fear a replay of the tragedy in Bukavu Leaders of the RPFinstalled government began three days of trips to the potential disaster area Saturday trying to assure people that the new government would not try to settle scores The United Nations said it was distributing thousands of leaflets saying the new peacekeepers would provide security and French officials held town meetings to persuade resi dents to stay But Brusset said about refugees crossed a bridge near the border in southwest Rwanda heading for Bukavu He and other relief officials said thousands of refugees were converging on the border along two roads from the north and east military officials were reluctant to estimate the number of people on the move Were getting a lot of conflict ing figures from zero to We dont know how many are on the the military spokesman Maj JeanGuy Plante told reporters Estimates of people in the French security zone range from million to million Jerry the Irish aid group Goal said residents of the zone that his group spoke to all said they plan to leave in the next two Inside Local The United Way of Howard County and an army of volun teers are gearing up for a his toric project Page Cl Classified News of Food will be scarce WASHINGTON AP Mas sive food shortages will develop over the next 40 years as a popula tion explosion gradually outstrips world food supply researchers reported Saturday Science and technology can no longer ensure a better future unless population growth slows said a report compiled by the environmental research institute Worldwatch Food sup ply is the most immediate con straint on the earths population carrying Projections of current trends say the worlds population could expand from todays billion and reach 10 to 14 billion by 2050 The biggest increases are expected in some of the poorest areas such as Africa and southern Asia WorldWatchs Full House report released Saturday predict ed population would rise to billion by 2030 At that level the projected year ly grain supply will amount to 528 pounds per person the report said Thats a quarter of what the average American uses now and just 20 percent above consump tion in India one of the worlds poorer countries The Population Fund responsible for family planning I last April unveiled a proposal to try and stabilize world population at billion by 2050 But food supplies will be too short to feed the world even if that foal is reached said Lester R rown coauthor of the World watch study which was prepared in anticipation of next months Population Conference in Cairo Egypt The institute told of failed attempts to increase rice produc tion and fish catches in recent years illustrating that new tech nology cannot be counted on for breakthroughs to higher food otft put After decades of steady growth world farm production will no longer be able to keep up with the increasing demand the study pre dieted No Napa NAPA Calif AP Showing off highly trained longhorn cat tle was supposed to rustle up interest in a local fair But by the time the dust settled the long horns stampede had knocked over street signs and smashed into police cars They told us they were highly trained that they could be con trolled Obviously they couldnt I think were lucky no one got said Lt Michael Berg The herd of 25 longhorns were released in the center of town to help sell tickets for the Napa Town and Country Fair They immediately began to devour city hall lawn and shrubs Then the rodeo organizers urged them along the onemile stampede route to the fair ground The longhorns took off like the bulls at Pamplona Hooves scraped and skidded along die pavement Friday The cattle bumped into parked cars and knocked into street signs One butted against the doors of the Redwood Bank while three employees held it shut If s a good thing we never put in that automatic door we were talking said bank employ ee Lise Tamer Napa police could only stand by At one point he longhorns smashed into the side of a sheriffs car Halfway to the fairground the longhorns ran into a lint of anti rodeo protesters who had vowed to block the stampede We think theyll change their mind when they see 25 longhorn cattle bearing down on said Berg The protesters scattered at the last moment   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