Once again I am appalled at the effrontery of the leaders of Effingham County Hospital.
I have spoken with Commissioners Loper and Utley on the feasibility of supporting the LifeStar helicopter in Effingham County. I see that it is a win-win situation for all involved. No longer would a citizen have to wait 15-20 minutes for LifeStar to fly here from somewhere else except in a few cases. The chopper would be here.
I commend the IDA on their forward thinking as this will be a boon to help draw more interest to our county such as industry or commercial businesses.
On the other hand, the hospital refuses to help with the initial expenditure to get the project off the ground. The “Mission Statement” on the hospital Web site reads, “Our mission is to provide access and delivery of quality, cost effective, community based health care to all the citizens of Effingham County.”
As we all know, the Hospital Authority, with insight from the CEO and CFO, chose not to roll back the millage to relieve some of the tax burden on the citizens. They need all the money they can get. And they do need money to provide the newest and latest equipment.
Do they spend the money wisely? Sometimes I wonder. The LifeStar deal with the county was for the hospital to contribute $25,000 for the start up cost and then be reimbursed over time as the rent monies came in.
Mrs. Norma Jean Morgan is quoted as saying, “We felt that it was something the citizens would not have approved.” I am a citizen, and I feel that when you spend money to get something that is good for the community as a whole and get your investment back over time that you have spent my money wisely.
Maybe we need a full Authority Board. This board seems to have trouble filling seats. At last count, two more members have resigned from the board, making the total three members gone, leaving a void for the citizens of their districts.
William “Bill” McLendon
Former Hospital Authority member for the 1st District