Letters to the editor

Globe Magazine readers respond to recent stories on New England travel, reforming health care, and a unique Miss Conduct column.


Loved your take on “12 Favorite Vacation Spots in New England” (May 18). Lenox and Provincetown are both lovely, popular vacation spots in Massachusetts, but why is America’s Oldest Seaport — Gloucester — not in the spotlight? Steeped in history, with 60 plus miles of coastline, Gloucester is a gem. Here you can sail on a schooner, watch whales, see exceptional live theater at the Gloucester Stage Company, be a foodie, visit Rocky Neck Art Colony, check out restaurants featuring free live music seven nights a week, never sit still, or just unwind and chill out.

Cindy Hendrickson



On the Globe’s Facebook page, we asked readers to share their best New England vacation destinations. Here’s how some of you responded:

Fenway Park — Guy Mannerino


Good Harbor Beach, Gloucester — Ivy Weiner Dorflinger

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Acadia National Park — Jackie Crotty

Rockport, Massachusetts — Jack Bisikirski

Hampton Beach — Mary Thawley

Lake Saint Catherine, Vermont — Kathryn Grubbs


Cape Cod — Maureen McLaughlin

Freeport, Maine — Laurie Guptill

Block Island — Chet Knotts

Martha’s Vineyard — Maureen Johan

Nantucket — Caroline Bullard Canto


Newcastle, Maine, “or my backyard” — Merrill Pearson Bloor


Jonathan Bush’s essay “A Prescription for Fixing Hospitals” (Perspective, May 18) was straightforward, honest, and serious. He, however, missed discussing one important player who can help bend the cost curve: the health care consumer. Nowhere in the excerpt does he mention how consumers’ lifestyles impact the costs of health care. Until all participants in the health care system have some skin in the game, we will remain stuck finger-pointing.

Daniel Phillips


Bush’s fine summary of the perverse forces behind hospital mergers could be enhanced by one more factor: data sharing. Everyone would like his or her records available to specialists as the patient moves from one clinic or hospital to another, but that’s rarely possible in the US health care system today. Although solutions exist, through open standards for data formats and exchange, most institutions would rather form small, regional monopolies and reinforce them with internal data exchange than join a nationwide system. In other words, your doctor can get your records if he or she is within the particular clump of institutions that have merged — but not if you cross the street to a competitor.

Andrew Oram


The author fails to mention two key reasons for the cost of health care in this country as compared to other countries: the markups required to support 1) shareholders and 2) the administrative burden of supporting a multi for-profit payer system.


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To me, the biggest problem at the moment is the fragmentation of health care. A recent cardiac patient I know faced the emergency cardiologist, the resident, her own GP, the evening and weekend coverage, any number of nurses. . . . two weeks later, she’s still unstable. This market-driven advice points directly to making it worse before it gets better.


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Excessive cost is endemic to the three industries that drive our regional economy — health care, higher education, and financial services. God help all of us homeowners if and when the nation gets these costs under control.


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Bush is so critical of large hospitals, but my life was saved several times in the last 10 years by the incredible, wonderful doctors and nurses at Mass. General Hospital. I am so grateful for the wonderful care they provide me and many others.

Doris Gannon



Give a Grammy to Miss Conduct for her reworked lyrics to Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” and sage accompaniment. Best column ever.

Robert Coyne


COMMENTS? Write to or The Boston Globe Magazine /Comments, PO Box 55819, Boston, MA 02205-5819. Letters are subject to editing.