Alaska, Health, KPB, Opinion

Opinion: Seniors and Military on Kenai Peninsula Denied Choice of Doctors

Sumitted by Peter T. Zuyus – 

After a long battle with bureaucrats, the Surgery Center of Kenai recently opened its doors.  The Surgery Center could offer medical care to Medicare/Medicaid and Tri-Care patients at significant savings over Central Peninsula Hospital.  In addition,  the Surgery Center could save Seniors over 40%  in co-payments.  Medicare/Medicaid and Tri-Care will not reimburse for services unless the Surgery Center is issued a transfer agreement from Central Peninsula Hospital.

The Surgery Center physicians, individually, have been caring for Medicare/Medicaid and Tri-Care (military) patients for years.  However, as a Surgery Center, Medicare/Medicaid/Tri-Care requires the center to have a “transfer agreement” with Central Peninsula Hospital.   Central Peninsula Hospital refused to issue the transfer agreement.  Alaska Regional and Providence offered the surgery center a transfer agreement, but Medicare requires that one be granted by a ‘local’ hospital.

Central Peninsula Hospital is owned by the Kenai Peninsula Borough and  theoretically takes direction from the Mayor and Assembly.  CEO, Rick Davis of Central Peninsula Hospital has refused to sign the transfer agreement.

The refusal by CPH CEO Rick Davis, to sign a transfer agreement, is an outright denial of medical care choice, to Senior citizens and Veterans.  Physicians who are willing to serve Senior, Medicaid  and Veteran patients are directly being told:  NO!  CPH will determine which doctor and hospital Seniors and Veterans will use.

These are NOT doctors, making your medical decisions.  These are government bureaucrats deciding your medical fate.  When questioned about his concern for community access to medical choice at the Aug.5 Assembly meeting, by Assemblyman Ogle,  Davis said that he is NOT concerned about the community, he works for the hospital.


Senior citizens throughout the United States are being denied access to their choice of medical care services and doctors, as a result of $550 million in cuts to Medicare providers initiated and approved by the current administration.    At the same time,  Medicare administrators are being encouraged to reduce costs in order to extend the solvency of the program.  Doctors are beginning to turn away Medicare patients.  These are facts.

It is a dangerous and frightening leap into the world of rationed medical care,  if we allow bureaucrats to decide the medical care we receive.  This must be corrected immediately, or like a disease, will spread.

Alaskan residents and legislators  across the state  please stand up.  Contact Mr. Davis, CEO CPH;  KPB Mayor Mike Navarre and the CPH Board of Directors.  Demand the right to make your own medical choices.  Demand that your fellow KPB Seniors and Military keep the right to choose their own doctor.


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  1. What doctor sends their patients to this place?
    If something goes wrong, I’d like to be a little closer to the hospital!
    40% of Co-Pay? Veteran, Medicaid not sure about saving anything to talk about.

    Borough set the hospital up to run itself. The only time Borough gets involved is bonding
    And other spending issues. Day to day operation is not the Borough’s business.

    Somebody is a newby that does not know beans about the Borough or the hospital or Veterans.

    To borrow from Palin, “Quit making stuff up!”

    Why lie and cause a scare to seniors? What motive for spreading stupid false statements?

    Anyone have a clue?

  2. Um Bob related to the employee at the hospital???

    Why did you just intentionally lie to the public?

    The hospital and the board backed by Mike are indeed taking the right away for our vets, all Medicare and Medicaid patients. By telling the public that they won’t sign this agreement it means that they’re telling those people you can only get care at the hospital.

    Just so you know we the public are aware and we are not stupid.

    Just wait until other candidates find out that Mike Navarre is actively taking away peoples rights. This could cost him his election.

    We are not fooled bad Bob we are not fooled

  3. Finally someone commented!!! I hate to be the first.

    Great article! I love having a hospital close and I love CPH. We are lucky to have a hospital so close.

    I must say that I’m saddened to hear that CPH have decided to play with me and make it so that I can’t go to a cheaper location. Anyone who’s had surgery in Alaska knows that surgery centers are cheaper way cheaper. I have been to the anchorage surgery centers cause the prices at the hospital are very high… Dr. Humphreys though, go to the hospital for that man!!!

    Why does CPH not work with the surgery center? They make themselves look bad. What are we stuck in a forest Gump movie and we can’t sit here?

    See CPH that’s frustrating to hear that you’re trying to limit our ability to get cheaper prices and surgeries. I have many veteran friends who listen to the tall dark and handsome show where they talked about this issue and were actually talking about picketing CPH.

    Hey Insider, I like Mike and don’t agree with your comment. I would hate to see Mike lose as borough mayor. I don’t think this will hurt Mike but this is stupid. He is acting in behalf of the hospital and not looking after the people. Mike don’t give them ammo to make you look stupid. Stop protecting a group that will be just fine and think about those like me who can’t afford care. Put yourself in our shoes and do the right thing.

    We need you!

    Bob, I have to agree with insider.

    See you fishing!

  4. Tell me the name of the Kenai Peninsula treating doctor that denied the Veteran,

    the Senior,

    the Medicaid patient

    the care that they required!

    I’ll see that these doctors are reported.

    Lies, lies, and damn lies.

    When you lead off lying, not believing the rest of your B.S.

    Not related to CPH, I am a senior, a Veteran and will call out every lie you post.

  5. After doing reseach it has been proven that there was not and that there is not a denial of health

    services to ANY Veteran, Senior or Medicaid recipient.

    Zuyus’ statement and bold headline is


    Dirty politics

    Dirty lies.

    Bearup supporters are not to be trusted. Here is why not to trust Bearup…….

    Bearup was disallowed the bankruptcy discharge of debt.

    “Exited” or denied bankruptcy protection?

    “The Bearups testified that they viewed their ministry as a 24/7 commitment, and contend that virtually all their endeavors, income and expenses were related to the church. To illustrate this, they testified that they only occupied as personal space one bedroom and one bathroom in their 4,000 square foot house. While it is unnecessary to determine what imponderable percentage of their time or assets is devoted to the church exclusively, I do not accept their shifting all their assets and income to the church to the extent this impairs their bankruptcy creditors’ legitimate rights to their assets and income.”

    “A key element of the UST’s ( United States Trustee ) case was that the church income was freely used to pay the debtors’ personal expenses, and the church income should have thus been acknowledged to
    some degree as belonging to them individually for bankruptcy purposes. This failure of cooperation or disclosure is an element in the court’s finding against the debtors in this case.”

    The entire file is available.

    The chronology of where the money came from, where it went and why he did not think he had to report his most major income from his own church is all laid out in the pleadings.

    The massive credit card debt was not all from medical.

    “Much of the $158,000 credit card and store credit debt shown on the Bearups’ Schedule B 5 is attributable to improvements on the Alaska property for church purposes (e.g., improving the child care facility in the garage).”

    Now, let’s move on to Bearup’s residency!

    When does Arizona start and stop?

    When does Alaska start and stop?

    Voter registrations, fishing and hunting licenses, mailing addresses would be informative.

    Please publish the bankruptcy court pleadings to prove what was done.

    For every lie from a Bearup supporter there is always a motive.

  6. healthcarecruisader

    Surgery Center (ASC) Facts.
    For MediCare patients (mostly seniors) there is a national fee schedule for ASCs and there is a national fee schedule for Hospital Outpatient Departments (HOPD). Here are two examples of identical procedures and the Medicare payment schedule:
    1) Lumbar Vertebroplasty-this is done when you have a collapsed vertebrae (compression fracture) due to osteoporosis or trauma
    2) Screening Colonoscopy-we all know what this is!
    ASC Payment HOPD Payment ASC Savings (%)
    Vertebroplasty $1,423 $2,576 $1,153 45%
    Colonoscopy $415 $778 $363 47%

    Medicare overpays the HOPD on every procedure that can be safely done in an ASC, in more or less the same ratio.
    Not every surgery can be done in an ASC, and that is not an ASC’s purpose. However, the very short, relatively uncomplicated procedures can and should be done in the lowest cost, most convenient location.
    Taxpayers are paying a huge premium to subsidize Central Peninsula’s monopoly on Medicare, Medicaid, TriCare and VA. Each Medicare patient is responsible for their 20% copay, so they are also paying extra out of pocket for the hospital’s monopoly.
    The surgery center has stated that they want to treat ALL PATIENTS, not just the commercially insured and workers comp patients. To do so they need a transfer agreement from the local hospital.
    As for safety, a similar small surgery center in Wasilla does about 1,800 procedures a year, and during their 18 months of operating they have sent just 1 patient to the hospital, and it was non-life threatening.
    Tell your state and borough legislators that you want choice, and access to the surgery center for minor procedures. Don’t let the hospital dictate where you have to go!

  7. Facts: Not One Senior, Medicaid or Veteran has lost their choice of doctor!!!

    Why did Zuyus lie in the headline???

    He is the Chair of Bearup’s run for office. Too bad he did not run Bearup’s 2012 run for Arizona sheriff.

    Still looking for Bearup’s proof of residency.

    When does Arizona start and Alaska stop?

    Submission Date: 08/11/2014
    Filer First Name: THOMAS
    Filer Middle Name: R
    Filer Last Name: BEARUP
    Election: 2014 – Kenai Peninsula Borough
    Office: Mayor
    Candidate Information
    Previously Registered (From MJE or LOI Form)
    Election Year: 2014
    Candidate Display Name: Tom Bearup
    Candidate Legal First Name: Thomas
    Candidate Legal Last Name: Bearup
    Campaign Committee Name: Friends of Tom Bearup
    Campaign Mailing Address: P.O. Box 2763
    City, State Zip: Soldotna, Alaska 99669
    Name: Peter Zuyus
    Address: P.O. Box 2763
    City, State Zip: Soldotna, Alaska 99669
    Phone: 907-262-8741
    Fax (Optional): Did Not Report

    • Bad Bob what are you saying? You do not make sense…

      The surgery center providers who are local providers “doctors” are being forced by the hospital to not been seen at the surgery center.

      By not giving the transfer agreement, they are giving you multiple examples that you cannot receive care at the surgery center,

      I have called my local provider who told me personally that I cannot get my procedure at the surgery center if I have Medicare Medicaid or any government TRICARE payer.

      That is the truth and I WILL HAVE NONE OF THAT!!!!

      CPGH YOU HAVE GONE TOO FAR!!! Your restricting care and shame on you, and MIKE N. You are telling the public you stand by a hospital that makes your public pay high rates when they could get cheaper and quality care elsewhere.



  8. Tell us the name of your doctor that said you cannot have your needed surgery, Insider.

    That is false. You can have surgery.

    Do not blame someone else for a lie that is made up.

    If you will not name the doctor that refuses you care, then you are making things up.

    Waive your medical confidentiality and put the facts on the table.

    Not one person has been denied medical care.

    If your doctor tells you he/she will not provide you with the required surgery because of the

    Lack of a transfer agreement, report them. Then find out the facts.

    Seniors, Veterans and Medicaid patients are not being denied care.

    Bearup is a lost cause. Arizona did not want him and Alaska knows better. Read his

    Bankruptcy Court findings.

  9. What is all this ranting and raving? Did not see one mention of bearup in the article.

    • healthcarecruisader

      Thank you HERBTR. Happy to engage in an enlightened discussion around healthcare and the facts, but Bearup, he can be the subject of some other discussion. Please….
      As far as the original contributor’s comments re:physician choice, here is where it gets interesting. If a Medicare patient needs to have a procedure done, say a lithotripsy, and his Urologist has credentials at the surgery center, but no the hospital, he would have to change to the Urologist who is credentialed at the hospital. Ergo, he has to switch.
      The bigger issue in my mind is that a Medicare patient who needs a screening colonoscopy and wants to save some money by having it done for half price at the surgery center, does not have that choice. Can you imagine, a veteran who risked his/her’s life so that we can enjoy the American Way, is having their choice narrowed to 1)have a procedure done at Central Peninsula, or 2) drive in to Anchorage to one of the 7-8 surgery centers there! What?!
      Call your legislators, both state and federal, and tell them our seniors and vets are not second class citizens just because Central Peninsula says so. Force them to sign a transfer agreement with the surgery center, it costs them only the ink in their pen. Restore choice to those that deserve it most!

  10. Medicare is 80/20. The medicare co-pay is the 20%. To pay a $200 co-pay (at the surgery center) instead of a $450.00 (at CPH). That $250.00 is electric, heat or groceries for a senior on medicare. It is an important choice for some people.

    People like this badbob must have so much money they dont care, they should walk a mile in the shoes of someone on a fixed income.

  11. healthcarecruisader

    Correct. Most ASC procedures are about 60% of the hospital reimbursement for Medicare procedures so a more accurate example would be ‘$200 copayment at ASC, and $333 copayment at Central Peninsula Hospital’, for the exact same service.
    The government consistently pays 60-90% more across the board.
    While not all surgeries and procedures can be done in an ASC, a significant number can, and should be, which would stretch the healthcare dollar and aid in reducing wasteful spending and government deficits.

  12. Now I see where this is going..”Urologist has credentials at the surgery center, but no the hospital, he would have to change to the Urologist who is credentialed at the hospital”

    So what I gather is your “local provider” , doctor does not have the required credentials,

    Privileges at the local hospital and cannot work there. Why would your local doc not have

    privileges at the hospital?

    There is a Board of directors at the hospital. Take it up with them. If that goes nowhere the

    Courthouse is across the street.

    Zuyus blames the borough mayor. Zuyus is pimping for Bearup and wants to play politics.

    This is an issue of two competing surgical places. Some would make it political where I see a

    Legal challenge. The CPH has justifiable reasons and the new place has their economic, profit


    Take the fight to court and may the best lawyer win.

    Throwing stones at everyone to get your way won’t do any good.

  13. Looks like zeyus blamed davis. The assembly and mayor oversee the cph. Dont they have some responsibility? The KPB has a strong mayor government.

  14. Bonding and spending Borough money by the hospital is overseen by the Borough.

    Board of Directors and management of the hospital and it’s money is how CPH operates.

    There is also a pesky thing called a CON that the State controls.

    Too little for the CON to come into play? That is another topic that may come up if they

    Find a courtroom.

  15. healthcarecruisader

    Badbob, are you an attorney? How would you like to line up against an entity that generates $225,000,000 a year when you are a struggling little start-up. Oh yes, and you have a piggy bank known as Kenai Peninsula Burough tax payers.
    Clearly looking for public and political support against a monopolistic bully with bags of money is a logical approach, vs. a legal lottery ticket.
    The Anchorage hospitals give out transfer agreements when asked. They look at this service as a public good. They ‘compete’ on a level playing field with the 7-8 surgery centers that operate their and trumpet their service and excellence as differentiations.
    I expect CPH will end up in court, but it will be against the FTC or AK attorney general investigating what sure appears to be an anti-trust action.

  16. Why doesn’t “badbob” come out of the closet and let his background be made public? Must be hiding something that is embarrassing.

    • Any provider Dr. Humphries cause he was mentioned in the article, Dr. Innes, any provider cannot see patients in the surgery center if they are Medicaid Medicare or tricare because they can only treat patients in the hospital due the CPGH not providing a transfer agreement.

      Clear and simple…. You cannot keep ranting and hope it makes you right….

      Truth is its own constant bad bob. You are speaking wrong and are incorrect.

      CPGH is a villain

      Mike is sponsoring the villain

      Let the facts speak

  17. Herbtr and what kind of a kearbear are you? Are you disclosing your name? Must be Bearup!

    Dr. Innes and Dr. Humphries might just be too busy to stop by the Kenai storefront to bother

    Doing discount surgeries. They have credentials at CPH.

    To say it is a “Villan” is just over the top. Good luck with keeping your emotions in check.

    There would be a cost to the public if the hospital lost paying patients and had to by law take in

    All the non-paying patients.

    How many non-paying patients will the Kenai shop take in? None is the answer!

    Go to court, this is not a political issue.

  18. Where have you been? Obamacare mandated all people have insurance.

  19. healthcarecruisader

    Oh by the way, did anyone notice the little speed bump Central Peninsula bounced over when they had their Certificate of Need request for their new ‘tower’ cut in half by the state. Remember the $43,000,000 bond that was underwritten by CPB taxpayers based on all of the new income that was to be generated by the 2 new endoscopy suites (ambulatory surgery suites), PET scanner, CT scanner and new state of the art 3.0 tesla MRI scanner? The state rejected all of the revenue generators-NO endo suites, NO PET scanner, NO CT scanner and NO MRI. Instead the taxpayers are getting $43,000,000 of clinic space. That works out to about $500/sq ft. I’m no real estate investor, but that doesn’t look like a good deal to me. Where was the borough oversight on this fine project?