A hospital in northwest Florida is on the verge of filing for bankruptcy. This could spell trouble for many of the people who use it to get their medical services.
The Graceville-Campbellton Hospital is facing money problems that are threatening to close the facility for good.
Without funds, the hospital is unable to pay doctors and staff.
Graceville-Campbellton Hospital Administrator Jim Rigsby says the, "Main reason for why we don't have the participation is because we don't have the doctors to treat people in the hospital."
Many hospitals rely on insurance money to pay for most of its needs.
In this case the money isn't there and without enough staff, less people are admitted for treatment.
The dilemma is forcing the hospital's board of trustees to potentially raise millage rates by one full mill.
"Any time you talk about raising taxes, it's an unpopular thing and we know that,” Rigsby says. “But we also know that the greatest number of people want this hospital to stay open."
"The nearest medical facility's to the Graceville-Campbellton Hospital are in Dothan and Marianna. And if this hospital were to close down, anyone who comes here for services would have to travel a larger distance to get help.
"If a person in Graceville had a heart attack and this hospital was not here that would mean that, as it is now, an ambulance from Campbellton would have to come and pick them up to take them to Jackson Hospital. You're talking about 35 to 45 minutes," Rigsby explains.
Hospital officials say raising taxes would be the only way to keep it up and running, so that medical attention can be given to nearby residents.
Officials with the Graceville-Campbellton Hospital Board of Directors are expected to formally vote on the measure to raise the property tax in September.
If the measure is approved it will take effect October 1st.
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