Don't discourage blood tests
I worked for a number of years as a phlebotomist and have had to calm patients who were freaked out that it may hurt. When venipuncture is performed correctly, by a competent individual, it is nearly painless. Most insurance, even Medicare and the various state programs for the poor, cover blood tests. The state mandates blood tests for all newborns to screen for genetic diseases, such as Cystic Fibrosis, and also all kids receiving aid must have a hematocrit test performed regularly, to make sure that they are healthy. Blood tests, as I tell my patients, are the easiest, quickest, cheapest way for your doctor to know how your insides are working; the other options are exploratory surgery or an autopsy. Which do you prefer?
I really think that The Herald should seriously reconsider continuing to publish Smoots' columns.