Hospital renewal levy essential for growth


Latest improvements possible due to taxpayer support

By Randa Wagner - rwagner@civitasmedia.com



The Morrow County Hospital is seeking the renewal of their 2.5 mill/5 year levy on Nov. 3, and hospital CEO C. J. Miller is its biggest advocate.

Miller has seen alot of changes at the hospital through the years, and the last five have seen significant growth and outreach through MCH’s primary and ‘satellite’ locations.

“Primary care is the lifeblood of the community, which is why we invested in the primary care locations out in the county, to make it convenient for everyone,” he says. “The levy adds $1.3 million of operational income that allows us to continue adding services like urgent care, investing in the primary care network, and bringing in cardiology services.”

Morrow County Hospital partners with OhioHealth to offer a bigger operational infrastructure to the community.

“When we need assistance, they have some specific expertise that is available to us,” he notes, “even in physician recruitment and bringing specialists to the community. That money helps us to bring in the right specialists. We have a specialist who does pacemakers checks, a vascular physician who comes from OhioHealth for a vascular clinic here, echocardiograms, stress lab, nuclear medicine… all those services have been added here.”

Physicians and advanced practice providers in the areas of heart and vascular, orthopedics, pediatrics, OB/GYN, nephrology, and primary care have been part of the growth and services now available.

“When you have funding and support from the taxpayers, it allow you to provide services like the $25 blood draws,” Miller says. “It is a significant undertaking for us when we do this, but we look at serving our community and the surrounding communities where they might otherwise have to travel a great distance for the service.”

Over the past five years, outreach programs and services have expanded greatly and have included free prostate screening for 1,282 men; Health awareness blood profiles for over 18,500 community members; 1,160 free sports physical exams for county students; and a diabetes education group. Other services include:

– The Swing Bed program provides post-acute rehabilitation and short term skilled care following surgery.

– Sleep diagnostics and treatment services are available to those with respiratory, cardiac and sleep issues.

– The Urgent Care Center, opened two years ago, has grown to an average of 3400 visits annually.

– Full service rehabilitation services including physical, occupational, speech/hearing therapies, and dietitian services.

– Home Health is available for skilled nursing and rehabilitative care in the home.

Miller knows county-owned hospitals are a rare breed in modern times.

“Fifty-five small, rural hospitals nationwide have closed since 2010,” he notes. “It just gets tougher.”

That is why the local levy is so necessary for support of daily operational costs and future improvements. The levy costs the owner of a $100,000 home just $57.93 annually.

Morrow County Hospital employs 344 people and has 122 physicians and advanced Practice Providers available to patients. In 2014, the emergency department had 11,275 visitors, Urgent Care had 3,200 visits, there were 115,631 lab procedures performed, and 19,900 radiology exams. “Keeping great care local” is their levy message.

All of the hospital’s services and their physician listings are available at www.morrowcountyhospital.com.

Randa Wagner can be reached at 419-946-3010 ext 1803.

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Latest improvements possible due to taxpayer support

By Randa Wagner

rwagner@civitasmedia.com