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Jackson Health System Announces the Closure of 2 Hospitals in the Miami-Dade Area – Not Enough Money To Keep the Doors Ope

Posted Mar 12 2010 10:45am

Jackson Health System   is in financial hurt as governing board of the Jackson Health System that acts on behalf of the Miami-Dade County Commission is in a stew for finding new and faster emergency revenue to keep the hospitals open.  After the hurricane in Haiti, the system provided a ton of charity relief for those brought to image the Miami area and just within our own system provides charity care.  The CEO has announced the closure of 2 hospitals in the system and below is a quote from the hospital website on how one of the hospitals to be closed was in the process of renovating, so I guess all the building and improved services is either on hold or has gone down the tube. Its’ sad to see, but this seems to be the thanks one gets for providing healthcare services to those who are in desperate need. 

From the website:

“Jackson South is currently a 199-bed acute-care hospital located in south Miami-Dade County. Construction is underway to increase our size by 157,000 square feet and renovate an additional 72,000 square feet of existing space. This exciting project will expand our emergency room and surgical facilities and will add 57 new private patient rooms. It will also convert existing semi-private rooms to private rooms. Dining areas, and the diagnostic imaging and critical care units will be remodeled as well.

The Miami-Dade hospital provided over 600 million in charity care, but was reimbursed 400 million, so there’s the 200 million outstanding.  In California we are looking at some of the same potential shortfalls and there’s some additional hospital closures happening in New York too.   The state legislators are “trying” to speed up the emergency recovery money from 30 to 15 days and is hoping the federal government makes the proposed Medicaid changes.  This is one big huge reason that healthcare reform is done, and done right, as the state has their own deficit of over 3 billion to deal with as well, so you get the picture here that not much is being done currently except a lot of talking about how “broke” everyone is and healthcare suffers. 

A year ago, this is what was on the blog here and for a short while there seemed to be some reprieves with layoffs and closures, it all seems to have bounced right back.  BD

Hospital officials did not provide details, but CBS4 news partner The Miami Herald obtained the following email by a board member expressing image frustration.

In an e-mail obtained by The Herald Friday to Jackson President & CEO Eneida Roldan, board member Martin Zilber said: ``I am very strongly in favor of a meeting with our fellow stakeholders. However, I am concerned about doing so as a full board and at such a public setting. Perhaps you and senior leadership should meet with leadership of our partner organizations first. I know you are pushing for transparency and board inclusion, however, I believe the next time our board meets, we need to know how our partners are willing to help and be presented with options so our board can take action and make an intelligent decision.''

And while legislators were sympathetic, they turned down her request saying the state faced its own budget crisis with a deficit of $3.2 billion.
Jackson receives $77 million in state money every 30 days and Miami legislators said they would work to try to get the money to the hospital sooner in 15-day increments rather than monthly. 
On March 6, Roldan announced plans to lay off 4,487 workers and close two of the system's hospitals – Jackson North and South -- in response to a $229 million dollar budget deficit.

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