Phoebe study claims Lee hospital could have negative impact

Phoebe study claims Lee hospital could have negative impact
Members of the Phoebe Board (Source: WALB)

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Phoebe Putney Hospital board members heard the results of a study conducted by an outside consulting firm, DHG Healthcare, at their monthly meeting.

According to the study, a new Lee County hospital would damage the level of care the not-for-profit offers patients.

The study projects that five years after the new for-profit hospital opens, the total lost revenue for the Phoebe Putney Health System over five years will be more than $250 million.

Ben Roberts, a hospital spokesperson, said "The board needs this information so that they can begin to plan for these potential losses."

Besides level of care problems, there could be job losses. Phoebe employs 4,300 people, and generates an annual economic impact on the region of $1.2 billion dollars, according to the Georgia Hospital Association.

"The other consideration, and we did not interview or look at detailed data from other health care organizations in the region, but the logical conclusion is it will have a ripple effect on other health care organizations as well," said DHG Healthcare Consultant Chris Kane.

The Lee County hospital, which will be constructed at Grand Island located along the Lee and Dougherty County line about five miles from Phoebe, is projected to cost up to $130 million dollars and have 60 beds.

According to a letter of intent, the Lee County hospital will serve six counties.

The proposed Lee County hospital has not yet filed it's Certificate of Need, paperwork that will offer greater detail on the services it will offer. It is expected to be filed on May 18th.

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