Rural health care may get a needed boost under a proposed regulation change that would allow a hospital to downsize its services, the commissioner of a Georgia health agency said Thursday. Clyde Reese, commissioner of the Department of Community Health, said he would ask the board of the agency to promulgate rules for such a “step-down” facility.
Phoebe Putney Health System said Thursday that it is cutting 127 jobs as part of an organizational restructuring. These reductions come on top of the 33 “leadership’’ positions eliminated earlier this month by Phoebe Putney, the dominant hospital system in southwest Georgia. The Albany-based system said the job reduction would lower operating costs by $10 million. Similar staffing cuts are occurring elsewhere in the state and nation.
Calhoun Memorial Hospital, a small southwest Georgia facility, closed its doors Feb. 1. It collapsed under the cost of caring for patients who couldn’t pay. Some rural hospital advocates worry other small facilities face a similar fate in Georgia.