Patrick Springer first joined the reporting staff of The Forum in 1985. He can be reached by calling 701-241-5522. Have a comment to share about a story? Letters to the editor should include author’s name, address and phone number. Generally, letters should be no longer than 250 words. All letters are subject to editing. Send to email@example.com
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FARGO — North Dakota insurance regulators, responding to consumers who have complained about receiving bills averaging $55,341 for air ambulance flights not covered by their health insurance, are announcing steps to protect patients. As of Aug. 1, a new law requires health providers to give consumers a guide showing which air ambulance companies operating in North Dakota have contracts with the state's three major health insurers.
FARGO—North Dakota State University still is working to come into full compliance with fire safety codes following city inspections that found improper storage of hazardous chemicals in two laboratory buildings. University officials were notified of fire safety violations in early June, when Fire Marshal Ryan Erickson wrote a letter informing NDSU administrators that they had to take immediate action to come into compliance.
FARGO — Richard Boulger immigrated from Ireland during a potato famine and found his way to the bustling prairie town of Fargo, where he became established in the hotel business. For years he ran the Hotel Boulger at 223 Broadway, the corner of Broadway and Third Avenue North, which previously was home to the Exchange Hotel, in the heart of a fledgling downtown. In the 1880s, when Boulger arrived, Fargo was brimming with opportunity, enjoying a growth spurt after its founding in the 1870s as a prairie village of tents and huts.
FARGO — Much of eastern North Dakota has endured abnormally dry weather but has escaped drought conditions. That could change with sizzling temperatures in the 90s looming. Over the past 90 days, Fargo has received 52 percent of normal rainfall, according to the North Dakota Agricultural Weather Network. Fargo received 4.3 inches of rain during the period. Lawns that are just starting to parch could quickly turn brown if the forecast, which calls for highs in the 90s later this week and little chance of rain, holds.
FARGO—The program to train nurse practitioners at North Dakota State University was awarded a $513,992 grant to help prepare family nurse practitioners to serve rural areas. The grant will help NDSU to promote clinical education in rural health care shortage areas. North Dakota has 55 health care shortage areas, according to the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration.
FARGO—Protesters lined up in front of the office of Sen. John Hoeven, R-.N.D., to urge him to reject a bill that detractors say would take health insurance away from thousands of North Dakota residents in exchange for tax cuts for the wealthy. The protesters carried signs with slogans—"Healthcare for all," "Trumpcare is not terrific. It's terrifying."—during the noon hour on Wednesday, June 28, to call for the defeat of a Senate bill pushed by Republicans intended as a replacement for the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare.
BISMARCK—A divided State Board of Higher Education gave the go-ahead to the North Dakota State College of Science to seek private financial support for a proposed career workforce academy in Cass County. The board voted 5 to 3 to allow John Richman, president of NDSCS, and other backers of the proposed center to contact businesses to seek donations.
BISMARCK—North Dakota State University President Dean Bresciani's contract was extended Tuesday, June 27, in a vote that came without discussion, a contrast with the turbulence of last year, when his contract approval was delayed and board members gave him benchmarks for improvement. The State Board of Higher Education Tuesday approved a slate of contract extensions for campus presidents.
FARGO — The Federal Trade Commission is aiming to block the proposed merger of Sanford Health and the Mid Dakota Clinic in Bismarck on grounds that it would reduce competition in the healthcare market. The North Dakota Attorney General's Office will join with the FTC in seeking federal court action to block the deal, arguing that it would violate federal antitrust law. The agencies announced Thursday, June 22, that they will seek a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction to stop the deal pending an administrative trial, scheduled to begin Nov. 28.
BISMARCK—Sanford Health and the Mid Dakota Clinic here have taken a step closer to merging by signing an agreement and expect to combine their organizations soon. Now rivals, the two first announced their intent to merge in September 2016, and announced on Wednesday, June 21, that they intend to form their partnership soon. There will be no staff cuts as a result of the merger, Sanford and Mid Dakota said, and there will be no interruptions in patient care.