SWEETWATER COUNTY — In a press release, the administration of Castle Rock Hospital District expressed surprise and concern at the recent announcement that an affiliation agreement with Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County would be terminated on June 5, 2017.
The agreement was entered into three years ago.
Castle Rock CEO Bailie Dockter said, “The affiliation was terminated without cause. We were surprised by the news, as Memorial Hospital had never informed us of any dissatisfaction with the affiliation. Because of our commitment to patients, we would have promptly and conscientiously addressed any of the Hospital’s concerns.”
According to MHSC, the agreement has fulfilled the purpose of restoring Castle Rock Hospital District to financial stability, and they believe it is now time to focus on their own operations.
“This affiliation agreement, encouraged by the county, was created due to the financial stress that Castle Rock was in at the time. The arrangement to lease office space at Castle Rock for our specialists and also use their imaging and lab services was an effort to assist in their situation. Now that Castle Rock is becoming financially stable we felt it was time to focus on our own services and mission.”
– Gary Collins, PR & Marketing Director, MHSC.
In the press release, Dockter expressed a different interpretation of the purpose of the agreement, “This agreement was entered into three years ago to offer easier access to specialty healthcare for Green River residents.”
Dockter expressed concern that the announcement has caused misinformation to circulate in the community, she reported that patients have expressed concerns regarding their ability to choose where their lab work, radiology, and other services are performed.
“As the patient, you have the right to request where you would like your lab testing performed. Your provider has a legal obligation to accommodate those requests. Just as you have your choice of pharmacy, you also have your choice of where you would like your doctor to send orders for lab and radiology.”
– Castle Rock CEO Bailie Dockter
Dockter concluded the press release with the following statement about the financial well-being of the CRHD, “Castle Rock’s audited financials reflect sustained growth in both revenue and cash flow and, for the first time in its history, the absence of long-term debt. We are financially stronger than we have ever been and expect to remain so, irrespective of this news from the Hospital. We look forward to continuing to provide the quality health care you have come to expect of the staff, services, and facilities at Castle Rock Hospital District.”