Madison County Commissioners Accept $1 Million Offer To Save Hospital

By: Jennifer Milton Email
By: Jennifer Milton Email

"We are about two weeks away from the hospital not existing for financial reasons."

Madison County Memorial Hospital's Chief Executive Officer stood before county commissioners begging for help as the hospital's final hour creeped closer. The county's only hospital found itself in major debt and needing a large financial boost just to continue operating- causing residents to fear for their jobs, their medical care and their lives.

"A strong hospital means a strong town and if we don't have a hospital we're going to have problems," said Tommy Hardee.

Commissioners opened the floor to the public and their emotional outcries were hard to ignore.

"If you got a child burning up with a fever, and you can't make it anywhere else, where are you going to go? So please, keep Madison County hospital, whatever it takes."

Hospital CEO David Abercrombie proposed this option: Buy the land set aside to build a brand new hospital for 1 million dollars, then sell it back to MCMH for 100 dollars. The asking price seemed a little unusual at first, but eventually the commissioners voted unanimously and accepted the offer.

"We did very well. Really one of the best parts of tonight, honestly, as much as we needed the money and we needed it desperately, nevertheless it was to see how much support we had around the community," said Abercrombie.

Commissioners will purchase the land with money collected from a half cent sales tax placed on on the county in 2006, which has generated 1.7 million dollars so far. Madison County residents can now sleep well knowing their hospital will survive.

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  • by sHIRLEY.....AGAIN Location: Greenville on Oct 7, 2010 at 05:58 PM
    I can drive 20 miles to Madiosn or 30 miles to Tallahassee so I will not be going back to madison
  • by tom Location: madison on Oct 7, 2010 at 05:56 PM
    I hope they pay their water bill to the city
  • by Janice Location: Madison on Oct 7, 2010 at 01:55 PM
    If the discrepencies in the repair estimates and the invoices for repairs done is an example of the hospitals managment skills we are in trouble. There were hundreds of thousands of dollars difference! Who is in charge of that? How could they have been that wildly wrong? Did they just make up a number figuring the tax payers would make up the shortfall? I agree we need a hospital but I'm with Tom in thinking we don't need anything as elaborate as they are planning. Who's goining to staff it? You have to attract doctors and they are harder to get in a rural county like this than the businesses we can't get to settle here. They can't make payroll now, what happens when they have to hire more people? Last question. What happens when this million is gone?
  • by SHIRLEY Location: MADISON on Oct 7, 2010 at 11:23 AM
  • by Misunderstood Location: Madison on Oct 7, 2010 at 10:18 AM
    Since none of us to this point have been provided with any financial information of substance in all of these presentations, I will give you what my accountant was able to pull off of the internet per my request. This is from a form 990 that is some type of document the hospital is requred to provide to the IRS every year. Year ended 09/30/2006 Total revenue per audited financial statements $9,781,532 Total expenses per audited financial statements $10,053,295 Year ended 09/30/2007 Total revenue per audited financial statement $9,382,171 Total expenses per audited financial statemenst $10,059,749 Year ended 09/30/2008 Total revenue per audited financial statement $9,231,745 Total expenses per audited financial statemenst $10,371,100 All of you can see the trend and do the math and and I wish some of you people that think we need a new $22 million dollar facility no matter what will tell some of us uneducated, yet successful business people what we are looking at wrong
  • by Cows Rule Location: Lovett, FL on Oct 7, 2010 at 06:32 AM
    @Misunderstood, Great idea and some wonderful points. I like your thinking. I only wish we could get factual answers to your questions.
  • by Misunderstood Location: Madison on Oct 7, 2010 at 05:29 AM
    Simply put, many people in the community that do want a hospital are just not comfortable with the way leadership and the board has operated over many years and feel like this is part of the reason the hospital is and has been in financial distress. Please call the hospital leadership and just ask the the followinig: 1. Architectural firm - Was this firm selected with no competitive bid process? 2. Insurance - Is the current insurance rep the son of the board atty? Was there a competetive bid process. 3. Audit firm - Who referred them, and was there a competetive bid process? 4. Firm handling loan projections - Who referred them and did you get any quotes from more local groups? 5. Prior CFO. Was he terminated for alledged financial improprieties? Who referred him and did you interview any other candidates at that time? 6. Current Bank - Have you bid these services out in the past few years and what is the relationship of the board chair, architect, board atty to bank?
  • by MAY Location: madison on Oct 7, 2010 at 03:44 AM
    Call 911 and have then take you to TMH
  • by Working Poor Citizen Location: Madison on Oct 6, 2010 at 07:32 PM
    Well spoken Tom, Annon., and Misunderstood. I feel a Tea Party revolution coming on... It's about time the the working poor in this county stand up and demand that our tax dollars and the 1/2 sales tax be used in a responsible way. Considering our tax dollars are now being used, someone needs to get in touch with Shands and TMH. and see what kind of deal can be made. This hospital, with to much staff and not enough patients, will always be in the RED and will always be asking for money unless something else is done...and soon.
  • by TOM Location: MADISON on Oct 6, 2010 at 04:59 PM
    Great facts misunderstood.......I personally do not think it is a misunderstanding as much as lying. DMH in Perry also built the Taj Mahal for a county of 20,000 people and it struggled and lost money and if it wasn't for the county giving them millions it would have gone under......why is Madison going down the same road? THIS HOSPITAL IS WAY TOO BIG AND WILL HAVE TWENTY EMPTY ER ROOMS AND TWO EMPTY WINGS AND AN EMPTY LABOR AND DELIVERY AND EMPTY SURGERY SUITE JUST LIKE PERRY...... Now look at Shands at Live Oak. Very clean and modern and very well staffed with DOCTORS AND RN'S, and it is also much smaller and Live Oak has 40,000 citizens!!!!!!! MCMH has NO DOCTORS ON STAFF AND SOMETIMES NO RN'S IN THE ER AND THEY STILL CANNOT MAKE PAYROLL WITHOUT A BUILDING PAYMENT. WHAT WILL THEY DO WHEN THEY HAVE TO HIRE TEN HIGH DOLLAR POSITIONS AND MAKE A PAYMENT.
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