Shuttered Texas Hospital May Get Another Chance

St. Mark’s Medical Center in La Grange, Texas, shuttered on Oct. 12. The hospital had been financially strapped for years, and there were several attempts to save it, Board President and Chair Dudley Piland told Becker’s. One of those attempts came on Oct. 11, when closure notifications had already been submitted to the state and CMS. 

Quentin Whitwell, CEO of Progressive Health Group — an Oxford, MS-based hospital management group with experience in the rural sector — heard about the looming closure at St. Mark’s. Hoping to save the hospital, he connected with the Hospital Center of Excellence, a nonprofit formed by five community members with the same mission. 

HCOE had been working for two months to secure enough funding to keep the hospital afloat, its chief strategy officer, Sam Wilson, told Becker’s. They received commitments ranging from $5,000 to $150,000 from local high-net-worth individuals, including all five members of their own organization. They turned to nine local banks in search of a participatory loan to refinance the mortgage, though all nine declined, citing concerns with the regulators. They even brought concerns to the state of Texas, which agreed to make $1.125 million in grant funding available over the next two years — $750,000 one year, $375,000 the next — and increase Medicaid reimbursement rates by 10%. Read more.

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