This is a sad time for not only our family, but also patients, colleagues and all who live in the Portland area.

My husband, Dr. Seth Blank, has closed his thoracic surgery practice in Falmouth and is beginning a new venture in Augusta at MaineGeneral Medical Center. He is looking forward to working there, as all have been welcoming and the hospital has a very good reputation.

The sadness is not only from leaving staff and patients behind, but also because Seth was dedicated to the Portland community. Together, we are raising our four children here because we love the community and do not wish to uproot. It was always our intention to serve this immediate population with Seth’s excellent work and my volunteer efforts.

The bulk of the surgery that Seth performs is for lung cancer. This disease is not defeated yet, so his skills are needed. For two years, Seth worked for Mercy Hospital with excellent patient results. Last August, along came the budget cuts and he was fired. This type of surgery is not a moneymaker for the hospital but is very much needed.

Seth then went into private solo practice (still operating at Mercy) until the week of May 9. He was unable to sustain our family’s needs.

Seth will be available in Augusta for any patients in need. I am personally saddened by the lack of support from Maine Medical Center and Mercy Hospital and by the lack of vision to see that thoracic surgery is an important patient need.

Lynn Harvey Blank

Cape Elizabeth