Representatives from 14 south Georgia hospitals met in Albany Wednesday morning to discuss alternatives to Gov. Sonny Perdue's proposal to cut more than $278 million in Medicaid funding.
These cuts could have a serious impact on medical care statewide. From staffing to schooling, health care representatives from across the south are getting down to business, trying to find alternatives to a newly proposed plan to decrease Medicaid funding, and while it's still a work in progress, most agree that the governor's proposal would have serious repercussions.
"Oh it's sad, we just know some hospitals won't be here come this time next year if these do go through,” comments Ken Beverly, CEO of Archbold Medical Center.
Bainbridge Memorial Hospital CEO Jim Peack says his staff will do everything in their power to not close their doors, but he fears the worst could happen.
"It's going to hurt our community, slow the response rate to patient calls, and cause staff EDS problems,” explains Peack.
Health officials offer a variety of alternative health care funding strategies, increasing Georgia’s tobacco excise tax, expediting anti-terrorism funding disbursement, and diverting part of the One Georgia budget funding back into the healthcare system. A system many hope stays in tact.
Acknowledging some cuts may be inevitable in Georgia’s current economic situation, hospital officials will continue to urge the governor and Georgia’s legislature not to make the change.