Hamilton County Hospital to lose Greeley health service

1/10/2013

By RACHAEL GRAY

By RACHAEL GRAY

rgray@gctelegram.com

Greeley County Health Services will no longer offer services to Hamilton County Hospital, starting next week.

The services, which Greeley County has provided for the past five years, are set to end on Jan. 18.

The Board of Directors of Greeley County Health Services voted in December 2012 not to renew physician coverage to the hospital in Syracuse due to the lower number of doctors now in Greeley County.

Steve Mangan, chairman of the board, said Greeley County no longer can provide services outside the local facilities.

"When we initially agreed to provide medical support to Hamilton County, GCHS had five physicians available to cover both counties. Now, we have only three physicians and can no longer provide medical services outside of our own facilities."

Mangan said services still will be provided in Wallace County.

"This was a difficult decision as we valued our relationship with Hamilton County Hospital. We have made a significant investment in recruiting and employing GCHS physicians, and plan to focus on the demands and needs of Greeley and Wallace counties," he said.

Greeley County Health Services is located in Tribune, with a service area that covers a large part of western Kansas, including the primary communities of Greeley and Wallace counties.

GCHS services include an 18-bed hospital, rural health clinics in Tribune and Sharon Springs, a 32-bed nursing home with four assisted living rooms and full-time physical therapy. There are three board-certified family physicians, an advanced nurse practitioner, two physician assistants,¬ a behavioral health provider, a physical therapist, cardiac rehabilitation, a full suite of diagnostic imaging services and a part-time general surgeon. Outpatient specialty clinics include gynecology, cardiology, pain management and orthopedics, according to a release from the facility.

Hamilton County Hospital officials did not return phone messages seeking comment.

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