CEO: Madison facility would threaten Athens hospital

By By Thomas Tingle
Record Managing Editor
A proposed 120-bed for profit hospital in Madison has officials at Athens-Limestone Hospital fearing the possible closure of that facility and the loss of more than 650 jobs.
Phil Dotson, CEO of Athens-Limestone Hospital, said if the hospital proposal is approved by the Statewide Health Coordinating Council, it could mean Athens would no longer have a community hospital.
"It's just that serious," Dotson said.
An advertisement published in the Aug. 21 edition of The News-Courier entitled "Montgomery politics could cause our hospital to close" called the proposal a "backroom deal – Montgomery style – is being put together that could cause Limestone County to lose our local hospital."
Dotson said the area already has more than 300 additional hospital beds than needed and a new hospital in Madison would be devastating to the residents of Athens, particularly the senior citizens who depend on the hospital for their health and well being.
"It could also cause Limestone County to lose more than 650 jobs and millions of dollars to the local economy," Dotson said. "Even worse, the proposal is not even allowed under Alabama's current state health plan. Triad/Crestwood wants to adjust the state health plan to allow the additional beds in Madison County."
The ad continued in reading that "To get what they want, Triad/Crestwood has made large political contributions, hired expensive Montgomery insiders and greased the tracks."
Triad/Crestwood has proposed building a $60 million 120-bed hospital in the city of Madison. Property is already being sought and the Statewide Health Coordinating Council could make a decision as early as Aug. 29.
Dotson said in looking at the zip codes that Crestwood Hospital has identified as its service area, more than $4.6 million from those living in portions of those zip codes comes to Athens-Limestone Hospital. He said six percent of the admissions into the hospital come from the identified zip codes.
"That is a lot of money that we could possibly lose," Dotson said. "Something else that needs to be considered is if this hospital is built in Madison, it could mean the closure of this facility or an end to a community based, community owned hospital."
Officials from Athens-Limestone Hospital plan to attend the meeting and are asking residents to contact Gov. Don Siegelman, who appoints the council, with their concerns.
"If they win, we lose," Dotson said. "The Athens City Council, Limestone County Commission, Athens-Limestone Chamber of Commerce and our local Economic Development Association and other groups are opposed to this."
Athens-Limestone Hospital is a non-profit medical facility.

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

“I’m Meant To Be Here”- Dell Pettus Signs With New England Patriots- Former Sparkman Player Goes Pro

Lifestyles

Get those pumpkins planted: Halloween starts in July

Events

CAFY Back to School event to be held Saturday at Calhoun’s Huntsville campus

Bob Jones High School

Teachers support DIAL Scholarship program at UAH

Events

Joe Davis Stadium to host UNA vs. Jax State collegiate soccer match Aug. 18

Huntsville

UAH announces search for a master developer to enhance college-town experience

Events

Huntsville Parks & Recreation to host inaugural Color Jam Family Fun Run & Walk

Madison

Fernandez named Assistant Coordinator of Accountability and Innovative Programs

Madison

ALEA reports 9 traffic deaths, 3 drownings over July Fourth travel period

Madison

Management institute awards scholarship to Michelle Epling

Madison

Sarah Crouch’s debut novel, ‘Middletide,’ sets whodunnit in Puget Sound

Liberty Middle School

White named Secondary Instructional Technology Specialist

Madison

Nominations open for chamber’s Annual Gala Awards

Bob Jones High School

MCCL wishes good luck to 4 graduating seniors

Madison

DIGITAL WELLNESS: UAH researcher studying ways people are detoxing from addictive technology

Madison

Workers and high school students learning new skills at Calhoun Construction Academy

Digital Version

Digital version of The Madison Record – July 10, 2024

FRONT PAGE FEATURED

Bodybuilding Championships To Showcase Body Perfections

Madison

Arrest made in shooting death of teen in Madison shooting

Madison

Garbage truck slams into Madison house injuring one

Madison

HONORING OUR PATRIOTS

Madison

Historical society accepts Alabama House resolution at picnic

Madison

Madison Station Historical Preservation Society reaches 40th anniversary

Harvest

Audience can chill to Calypso Vision on July 11

x