Quorum Court gets update on hospital

The county hospital is "getting there," the Quorum Court was told last week.

Board of Governors Chairman Donnie Collins said the expansion of Ozark Health Medical Center is "almost complete." He said contractors will not make the May 20 target date for final construction because of weather, but he expects work to be completed by June 10.

About $10.3 million of the bond issue has been spent so far, Collins said. He said there have been 15 change orders at a total cost of $361,000. He said he would present the justices of the peace with a final budget at its next meeting.

Ozark Health CEO David Deaton then addressed the Quorum Court.

"We’re closing in on finalization of all construction projects," he said. "The impact of what we have done so far is tremendous."

He said increasing the size of oncology services is proving to be a big help to area cancer patients who no longer have to travel long distances after undergoing chemotherapy sessions.

Deaton also noted the emergency room has expanded and there is now an MRI in house and the tests can be done much more often than previously.

Deaton said a couple of things the hospital is working on is keeping down the county’s cost for inmate care, and trying to recruit some primary care physicians.