Fate of Crittenden Regional Hospital Hangs With Sales Tax Vote

Crittenden Regional Hospital in West Memphis, Ark., could close if a special county ballot referendum does not pass this summer, according to a Memphis Business Journal report.

On June 24, county voters will have to approve a one-cent sale tax increase to prevent the hospital from shutting down, according to the report. The new tax would create about $30 million for the hospital over five years. Crittenden Regional has accrued millions in debt and losses due to reduced patient volumes and lower reimbursements.

Gene Cashman, CEO of Crittenden Regional, previously told the Memphis Business Journal about 70 percent of the 100-bed hospital's revenue comes from Medicare and Medicaid. "What you have in Crittenden is a population that is very sick — some of the sickest people in the state of Arkansas — and a small hospital that is obligated to treat them and perform other services for the community because of its mission," he said.

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