COOK CO., GA (WALB) - Officials with the Tift Regional Health System said that Cook Medical Center will consolidate its emergency services in Adel with Tift Regional Medical Center's emergency room in Tifton.
The ER at Cook Medical Center will close at 11:59 p.m. on February 28, 2017.
A clinic in Adel will start offering extended hours for minor injuries on March 1, 2017.
Hospital officials said the move is designed to ensure the long-term sustainability and expansion of other hospital-based services offered in Cook County.
"Ongoing reductions in reimbursements across the nation have created a risk of closure for one-in-three rural hospitals nationwide," said Chris Dorman, TRHS President and Chief Operating Officer (COO). "This environment creates a unique challenge of providing a higher quality of medical care at a lower cost to ensure longevity. Approximately 22.7 percent of Cook County's population is uninsured, which led Cook County residents to seek minor medical care in the most expensive care setting--the emergency room. Approximately five percent of those patients who sought care at Cook Medical Center's ER were admitted or transferred to a higher level of care for an emergent medical condition."
Dorman went on to say that Cook Medical Center has lost nearly $2.6 million a year since 2012, and the ER is a main contributor of that loss.