Proposed ASC would cause Florida hospital to 'die in 5 years,' officials say

Officials from Jackson Hospital in Marianna, Fla., have voiced their opposition to a proposed orthopedic surgery center, which they believe ultimately would force the hospital to shutter, NBC affiliate WJHG reports.

Physicians from Jackson Hospital on Oct. 5 had intended to discuss Tallahassee Orthopedic Center's petition for an ASC with city commissioners, but the conversation had been postponed to next month.

Hospital officials said they hope Tallahassee Orthopedic Center, a 31-physician practice, will consider a joint-venture surgery center — with Jackson Hospital as the majority owner — "so it will keep our hospital alive," Richard Christopher, MD, told WJHG. "If we don't, this hospital is going to die, and I bet it'll die within five years."

Dr. Christopher also raised concerns about a potential loss of jobs in the area, as Jackson Hospital employs about 650 people, according to the report.

Marianna City Commissioner Kenneth Hamilton, meanwhile, said the proposed ASC would help keep healthcare prices in the community down by adding a competitor.

City officials said they will discuss the issue with both parties at the next meeting in November.

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