Momentum and A Call to Action

on Tuesday, 10 April 2018.

Hello Friends:

George Weems hospital operations have lost over $15 million during the past 10 years. Yet, they have not been able to provide the basic necessary services, financial stability and good health care outcomes the citizens of Franklin County deserve. With this letter, I am happy to report new and substantial movement on the local health care front. At the request of the County, Sacred Heart (together with its parent organization Accession Health Systems) has made a proposal to build and operate a state-of-the-art mini hospital within Franklin County. It would be larger and more capable than any previous proposals

Sacred Heart operates at least two other of these so called “Medical Mall” facilities in Florida currently. The facility would either provide onsite care or coordinated care with its other facilities and cover the full range of Preventative, Acute and Emergency care in a brand new facility, much larger than had been proposed by consultants to Weems. Doctors, Clinicians and other staff would be fully staffed and credentialed for the healthcare specialty area in which they would work, unlike the present situation. (For example, the physician who currently staffs the Emergency Room at Weems is NOT a credentialed ER doctor.)

The new facility could be potentially built in Eastpoint making it more centrally located for the residents of Franklin County and most importantly of all; most Franklin County citizens would have access to emergency intervention within the Golden Hour for crises like heart attack and stroke that Weems is unable to effectively treat today. The new facility would employ many local citizens and as it grew with the addition of Doctors and additional rotating services, even more employment opportunities would develop over time. SH would cover the full range of ailments here in Franklin County including Physical Therapy, Speech/Hearing Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Minor Surgical Procedures, Diagnostic Tests and state-of-the art Imaging including Ultrasound. Most of these specialties are not available now or nor are they proposed for the Weems Renovation as presented. The proposed all new SH 27,500 square foot facility would require “No Upfront Cash Outlay” from the County and would bring together under one treatment roof many of the services that Franklin County patients must now leave the county to find.

A private Developer would build the so called “Medical Mall” facility and lease it to a new Hospital Authority to be created by the County. Sacred Heart would become a major risk-sharing partner. (The County has been unable to find another such risk-sharing partner as of this date.)

Today, virtually half of Weems income is subsidies. As these subsidies have begun to dry up, Weems future has been seriously in doubt. (Those in attendance at the March’s Hospital Board Meeting were given a negative read on this SH proposal, mainly centering on the loss of jobs -20 was the figure thrown out - and “local control.

However, “local control” has not been the answer to the Weems shortcomings and monies are hemorrhaging out of the facility weekly! ) Another negative comment amounting to a ‘scare tactic’ was the risk of Sacred Heart abandoning the facility and leaving the Hospital Authority holding the bag. But any contract, if written by a knowledgeable attorney on behalf of Franklin County, would surely cap risk and protect the County’s interests.

Here is a link to Sacred Heart’s Proposal for you to review for yourself:

I encourage everyone to read this proposal closely and voice their opinion that Franklin County needs 21st Century medical care to attract to our beautiful county those goodpaying jobs and retirees who expect adequate health care. Haven’t the County Commissioners tried to be Hospital Administrators long enough? Let’s turn the job over to professionals who have already clearly demonstrated their commitment to local healthcare in our area for these many years. (Shockingly, statistics show that SH already cares for more Franklin County citizens than Weems does already.)

So folks, here we are once again at a crossroads. As a participant at this particular circus for the past 16 years, I’ve seen opportunities come and go. This proposal, on its face is a huge homerun for the citizens of Franklin County. Yet, the hand wringing and gnashing of teeth by County Commissioners is once again on full display. If you, like me, think this is the best deal we are going to ever see for good healthcare in Franklin County, pick up your phone, Tweet, email or Facebook everyone you can to support this proposal and not kill it off through either indecision or underhanded pandering to this or that political group. This is as good as it gets friends

I’d love to hear your opinions as well. Please call or write us if you have comments.

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Thank you!


Allan J. Feifer
Concerned Citizens of Franklin County, Inc.
P.O. Box 990
Eastpoint, Florida 32328
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
(850) 653-5571

“The Concerned Citizens of Franklin County, Inc. serves as a citizens’ advocate to ensure that our Franklin County governments are more open, affordable, efficient, and responsive to our citizens. The organization seeks to hold public officials accountable for their actions in the administration of their duties and in their fiduciary responsibilities to the taxpayers.”

Commissioner Contacts:

Cheryl Sanders - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - 697-2534

Chairman-Commissioner Smokey Parrish - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - 653-8790

Commissioner Ricky Jones - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - 653-8861

Commissioner Noah Lockley - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - 653-4452

Commissioner William Massey - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. - 653-8861