An unusual financial arrangement has taken Habersham Medical Center in Demorest off the critical list.
In a deal with the local hospital authority, Habersham County has agreed to make monthly bond payments on the northeast Georgia hospital’s $37 million debt, and will eventually take over the assets of the facility.
Habersham’s financial move “has been already beneficial to the hospital,’’ Demorest Mayor Rick Austin told GHN on Monday. “It immediately puts us back in the black.”
“This hospital is incredibly crucial to our community and our county,’’ Austin said.
Habersham strongly promotes itself to tourists and potential retirees. The availability of good health care is essential to attracting such people.
The agreement comes at what some experts consider the most pressing financial time ever for the state’s hospital industry.
Rural hospitals, such as the Demorest facility, are under heavy fiscal strain. Four hospitals have closed in rural Georgia over the past two years, with others many experiencing cash problems. full story