READ: Reduce cost, not number of poor kids, at Children’s

Joan Vennochi's powerful April 12th Boston Globe column discusses the recent news that Neighborhood Health Plan has changed its contract, which will mean fewer patients on Medicaid allowed access to Children's world-class care. She writes: "If eliminating a garden raises value questions for Children’s — as critics contend — so, too, does the issue of reducing the number of poor patients."

If you have not read the entire column, please do so right away:

It is imperative that we circulate this column as much as possible, for it gets to the heart of a greater issue at play with the Prouty Garden. People have called the Prouty Garden the "heart" or the "soul" of the hospital, but they don't just mean geographically and they don't just mean sentimentally. What they also mean is that the Garden represents the hospital's conscience, its moral compass, its inherent "goodness" — what separates it from a corporation that puts profits above all else. 

As one of our recent and generous GoFundMe donors wrote, "If the BCH administration will indeed demolish this wonderful place, then American medicine has truly descended into corporate greed. It is truly heart-breaking."

As Dr. T. Berry Brazelton said on Greater Boston, the hospital is "a monument to big business at this point." 

This has always been about far more than "just" a garden. This is about the essence of the hospital itself. Is it warm, or is it cold? 

Replacing a whimsical and lively art installation (the beloved ball machine) that enthralled sick kids for years with a two-story, Times Square-esque blinding screen in your lobby? Cold.

Replacing a beloved, historic, sacred, healing, memorial garden? Freezing.

Actively recruiting and catering to the world's wealthy while pricing out the local poor? Absolutely frigid.