DECATUR, Ala. (WHNT) - In Decatur, an important development regarding your medical care. Decatur Morgan Parkway, which used to be known as Parkway Medical Center Hospital, is no longer admitting patients. All in-patient services have been transferred across town to what used to be known as Decatur General.
Keeping track of the names can be confusing, so to put it simply, Parkway Hospital is no longer an in-patient facility. Huntsville Hospital, which owns both facilities, has consolidated all in-patient care to Decatur Morgan.
Leigh Hays, a Decatur Morgan Hospital spokesperson explains, "Part of our long term plan has been to reduce as many duplicative services as we can. So the goal has been to bring the in-patients to the Decatur General campus."
That goal has now been accomplished. All of the patient rooms at Parkway Hospital are empty. The nurses stations are unmanned. Parkway still maintains a fully staffed emergency room, radiology department and labs, plus a few other clinics. But it is no longer functioning as a traditional acute care hospital.
"It wasn't cost effective and one of the issues that we had when we operated separately is that this community wasn't quite big enough for two hospitals," Hays told WHNT News 19. She tells us they don't plan to close Parkway's emergency room, however E-R patients who require hospitalization will have to be transferred across town.
For now, Hays says they're studying their options to see how the facility could best be utilized. "We study, make some additional decisions about whats best to go into that facility and whats in the best interest of the community and begin to move those services over."
It's really all abouty the numbers. Hays tells us the in-patient population at Parkway had dwindled to an average of just 17 patients. She also tells us many of Parkway's employees have transferred over to Decatur Morgan to accomodate the growing need at that facility.