I am in receipt of your memo dated March 5, 1962 in which you point out that $650. has been made available to the Pacemaker
Fund in order to purchase the pacemaker which has been implanted in Mrs. [NAME REDACTED]. I appreciate the swiftness of your
action in arranging for the care of this needy patient.
I am in full agreement with the general principle that the cost of the pacemakers for indigent patients should not fall on
the already overburdened hospital funds. I feel, however, the solution that you suggest, that is adding 14% to the $650. price,
which the private and semi-private patients must pay, is not the ideal solution. This will bring the cost of the pacemaker
to over $750., which, it seems to me, is an unreasonable price for the pacemaker.
You must remember that many of the private and semi-private patients are barely able to pay for their hospital care and that
this is often only possible with the aid of their Blue Cross and Blue Shield. I feel that this would only be reasonable if
Blue Cross will pay for the cost of the pacemaker.
There are several alternate proposals that I would like to make which, I feel, should be considered:
1. One of the numerous women's groups be approached to donate a $5,000 fund for the specified purpose of buying pacemakers
only for those patients who are absolutely unable to pay for them. I would be very happy to address the meeting of any such
group in order to try to sell them this idea.
2. The hospital, with my aid if so desired, approach the General Electric Company to sell us pacemakers in quantities of five
at a price somewhat below $650., perhaps at $550., and that these be sold to the private and semi-private patients at the
regular price of $650.
I feel that we are morally in a strong position to make this proposal to the General Electric Company since we have handed
them by the dint of the research done at this hospital, a product which has the potential of some $40,000,000 a year.
3. The possibility of approaching one of the members of the Board of Trustees to set up a $5,000 Fund for the purchase of
pacemakers for indigent patients.
I feel that this is becoming an increasingly important problem at our hospital and feel that it warrants further discussion.