Dozens of Jackson Hospital officials show up to city commission meeting

Local News

MARIANNA, Fla. (WMBB) — Previously, Marianna City Commissioners referred to the company trying to bring in an outpatient surgery center as “skeleton.”

They said they wanted it to be confidential.

But at Tuesday’s commission meeting, the people there found out “skeleton” is actually Tallahassee Orthopedic Clinic.

“I would encourage the hospital to reach out to TOC, which I think they already have, and reach out to the city and reach out to the county to see if we can facilitate something that’s agreeable to all parties,” City Commissioner John Roberts said.

Tuesday night city commissioners were supposed to discuss their intentions to bring a new outpatient surgery center to Marianna.

The plan included many financial incentives for the for-profit center that critics say would ultimately hurt Jackson Hospital.

But just like last month, commissioners decided to table the matter.

Commissioners said they want to have a conversation with both parties there.

“Any talking points are going to be very narrow or nobody’s going to sit at the same table,” Jackson Hospital Physician Dr. Richard Christopher said. “I’ve never seen our medical staff organize to this degree about anything in the 34 years I’ve been here, and everybody’s angry.”

Christopher said TOC conducts about 23% of surgeries at Jackson Hospital.

He said the hospital makes a lot of money from those procedures.

“It would really be a grave threat to the operation of the hospital because they will take all of the profitable lines that we provide at Jackson Hospital, out of us,” Dr. Christopher said.

City commissioners said they did not mean to offend Jackson Hospital officials.

They said they didn’t realize how much opposition this proposal would receive.

“Our position is to help businesses come into the community, but it’s definitely not to hurt the hospital, so we want to make sure we make a decision where we’re able to help both parties,” City Commissioner Rico Williams said.

There isn’t a set date for the proposed meet-up with TOC, Jackson Hospital, and the city officials yet, but Williams said it will be soon.

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