Decline of services at hospital a worry

When I read your headlines on Wednesday morning, April 15, about Christus Good Shepherd and “The Right Direction” — I found it very ironic. Good to know that Christus GS is doing something that should benefit all of us here in Marshall by insuring we can safely receive treatment here. But that is not the primary concern we have. That would be the ever declining medical services available here.

What has happened to our hospital since Christus became involved is sad. They started with some superficial improvements to the parking lots. Then came a “facilities fee” for every visit to a doctor’s office in the building, patients in ER being shipped to Longview or Tyler, physical therapy patients referred to Longview. They reduced available services — no more labor and delivery, and now no more ICU. Then came their “rationale” — not enough patients and then not enough health care providers (physicians and nurses).

Just a few years ago this hospital was operating “in the black,” physicians were being recruited to locate here, hospital foundation was raising money to purchase new equipment — upgrades and improvements on an ongoing basis. Then Christus came in — made changes to services, staff and facilities — and reduced our local facility to a skeleton of what it was. Now — many empty rooms, whole floors shut down, a facility being wasted.

Why do I not feel comfortable with what Christus has done to Marshall’s hospital?

Ned Dennis

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