Texas hospital closes

Ayla Ellison (Twitter) - Print  | 

Financial challenges forced Hamlin (Texas) Memorial Hospital to close July 31.

Declining patient volume and dwindling reimbursement rates were among the factors that led to the hospital's closure, according to a July 2 announcement from the hospital's board of directors.

"Over the past many years inpatient utilization has decreased to the point that there are many days that there is no one in the hospital," the hospital said. "After an in-depth study of all departments in the hospital, income vs. expenses, it became very evident that Medicare, Medicaid, and most private insurance reimbursements did not come close to covering continually rising expenses. A declining tax base and tax payment delinquencies have also contributed to the financial hardships."

Patricia Barnett, president of the hospital district's board of directors, thanked local citizens for their support in a letter published on the hospital's Facebook page July 31.

"With a heavy heart, I am writing this to you, the citizens of Hamlin Hospital District. Today marks the end of an era of healthcare for us. Our beloved Hamlin Memorial Hospital will close its doors tonight at midnight," she wrote. "As I walked through the halls of our hospital for the last time today, so many memories flooded through my mind. I can say with all certainty that we did our job well, with love, dedication and pride for the patients that graced our doorways."

Ms. Barnett said Hamlin Medical Clinic, a walk-in clinic, will remain open.

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