CHS closes Missouri hospital; physicians put their money on the line to expand services

Franklin, Tenn.-based Community Health Systems closed Twin Rivers Regional Medical Center, a 116-bed hospital in Kennett, Mo., in June, and local physicians are trying to fill the medical gap, according to KBIA.

Twin Rivers closed its behavioral health unit in March, and about a month later announced plans to completely shut down. The facility closed June 12, which left patients scrambling to find care.

County officials want to build a smaller hospital and have an outside company operate the facility, but that decision is in the hands of local voters. In August, residents will vote on a sales tax to construct a new hospital and on a property tax to offer as a revenue stream to a potential hospital operator, according to the report. 

In the meantime, physicians have invested their own money to help expand medical services in the area by opening a new urgent care facility and a specialty clinic. They also provided the funds to buy a new MRI machine and renovate the operating room at Pemiscot Memorial Hospital in Hayti, Mo., which is about 20 minutes away from Kennett.

Although Pemiscot Memorial has faced financial troubles in recent years, and physicians could lose the money they invested if the hospital closes, Tim McPherson, DO, a primary care physician in Kennett, told KBIA that is not his top concern.

"If I were here for the money I would have left 31 years ago," Dr. McPherson told KBIA. "It's about the people. It's about the calling." 

More articles on healthcare finance:

State-by-state breakdown of 85 rural hospital closures
Physician group to close dozens of clinics amid federal investigation into CEO
The biggest financial pain points hospitals feel right now: Experts weigh in




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