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OPINION

Detroit Medical Center problems must be fixed

Paul W. Smith

It was Christopher Ilitch, president and CEO of Ilitch Holdings and all around good guy, who first deemed my morning radio show, “relentlessly positive radio.”

I do try to stay as positive as I can every morning, knowing there are plenty of other outlets where the news can be less than positive.

Unfortunately, a recent front page headline in this newspaper hit me hard: “Dirty, missing instruments plague DMC surgeries.”

This was not the story of a courageous doctor stepping forward and saying, “Enough is enough! I’m not going to stand by while this continues to happen!”

Not that there haven’t been many internal protestors and complainers at the Detroit Medical Center over the years, in fact, for at least 11 years, this dirty little secret of dirty surgical tools and other equipment stayed within the walls of all of the DMC Hospitals.

Some gave up complaining. Some left to find other jobs.

But apparently no one stepped up behind the protection of whistleblower laws to, well, “blow the whistle” on this long-term dangerous problem.

Congratulations to Karen Bouffard and Joel Kurth for the time and effort they put into this exclusive investigation, that will inevitably make ALL hospitals better and safer for all of us.

A story like this should give others the courage to speak up and speak out.

After “no comments” from many in Detroit, the owner of the DMC since 2013 — Tenet Healthcare, based in Dallas — was basically left holding the bag for a problem that existed for years before they took ownership, and now it must fix this major problem.

Of that, I’m relentlessly positive.

Paul W. Smith is host of “The Paul W. Smith Show” on WJR-AM (760) from 5:30-9 a.m. Monday-Friday.