Health professionals are scrambling in Kennett, Missouri to provide services for residents after the recent announcement of the closing of the city’s medical center.
A consolidation is taking place between Twin Rivers Regional Medical Center Kennett and the Poplar Bluff Regional Medical Center. As early as this week, the hospital in Kennett will cease to provide obstetric and gynecologic physician coverage. Over the next few weeks, the medical center in Kennett is expected to lose inpatient and outpatient services. The emergency room will be closed by June 30th. Area doctors gathered in Kennett last week to assure citizens that Kennett would have obstetric services, and an urgent care would be open in Kennett before Twin Rivers closes. Medic One Administrator Colton Kimber was at last week’s meeting and said the ambulance service would continue to run in Kennett. He says one concern he has heard is the long distance Kennett is away from a hospital.
"Kennett is actually in a good location because there are 12 hospitals in a 99-mile radius of Kennett," says Kibler. "On the back of our ambulance it is like a mobile emergency room, so we can provide the same kind of care that you would get in the ER. Length of distance to a hospital is not a problem because we have the technology to be able to provide needed care during such an occurrence."
The medical center employed 300 people and there has been concern about those who are losing their jobs, as well as the ripple effects from what is expected to be a loss of sales tax in the future.