Sunday, December 14, 2014

Fulton hospital says it will close by March 31 due to shrinking population and patient counts

Citing population losses and lower patient counts, Community Health Systems has announced that it will close Parkway Regional Hospital in Fulton by March 31. The hospital has 70 beds, larger than most rural hospitals that have closed recently.

The closure will cost 192 jobs, and hurt the city and county directly. "The hospital pays nearly $256,000 in utility, payroll and property tax to the city, making up 18 percent of city revenue," Rob Canning reports for WKMS in Murray. "Fulton is one of the poorest communities in Western Kentucky."

Patients who would have gone to Fulton are now likely to go to Martin or Union City, Tenn., both 12 miles away, or Mayfield's Jackson Purchase Medical Center, 22 miles away. Fulton County Judge-Executive David Gallagher is "in negotiations with the Fulton, South Fulton, Tenn., and Hickman city governments to extend a one-year contract with Tri-City Ambulance, a paid EMS service, to keep it active despite the closing," WKMS reports.

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