What happens when a rural community loses a hospital? Jobs disappear. Hopes for economic development fade. Residents look for a new route to the nearest hospital. Georgia has seen three rural hospitals close this year: Charlton Memorial Hospital in Folkston; Stewart-Webster Hospital in Richland; and Calhoun Memorial in Arlington.
Two South Georgia health systems are reaching out across state borders for help in positioning themselves better in a tumultuous health care world. Phoebe Putney Health System, based in Albany, announced Tuesday that it had struck a partnership with an affiliate of a renowned Pennsylvania-based health system, Geisinger, to improve quality of care and reduce costs.
Months after a high-profile fight to renew Georgia’s provider fee, the hospital industry is again concerned about the fee’s fate. This time, the source of the industry’s anxiety is not the state Capitol, but Washington. As the fiscal standoff intensified last month, the Republican House leadership at one point pushed repealing such Medicaid provider assessments, including those for nursing homes, according to hospital industry officials.
A hospital emergency room in central Georgia will soon close its doors. Flint River Hospital in Montezuma plans to close its emergency department on Sunday. Some Macon County residents fear that closing the emergency room will mean longer ambulance trips for injured and ill patients to Perry or Americus.
Gov. Nathan Deal's plan to avoid losing more than $450 million in federal money for Medicaid has cleared another legislative hurdle. A House committee on Tuesday endorsed the proposal to let an appointed board set special hospital fees to support Medicaid. Senate Bill 24 is headed to the full House.
Hospital officials and advocates for patients say Gov. Nathan Deal's decision to reject the expansion of Medicaid prescribed by the Affordable Care Act would leave thousands of the poorest Georgians uninsured.
Drug shortages are reaching critical levels at hospitals in Georgia and across the nation. Georgia’s emergency medical providers recently sent a letter to the state’s public health commissioner warning that drug shortages are endangering patients. At a recent conference at Emory University in Atlanta doctors and lawyers grappled with how to solve the problem.
Georgia’s hospitals contribute $38 billion to the state’s economy, according to a new analysis from the Georgia Hospital Association. The total includes jobs, direct spending and the ripple effects of that spending and employment.
Hospitals in Georgia are suffering under the weight of the sluggish economy, and the financial strain is especially heavy for smaller, rural medical centers. Nearly half of the state’s rural hospitals are operating in the red, according to the latest hospital financial survey by the state Department of Community Health.
Despite a still shaky economy, multi-million dollar hospital expansion projects are moving ahead across the state. For some hospitals, there’s no choice. Hospital CEO’s say they need to serve a growing and aging population, and fight-off competitors for future patients.