Pocahontas Memorial Hospital, West Virginia

800 WordsJun 24, 20164 Pages
Pocahontas Memorial Hospital Pocahontas Memorial Hospital (PMH) is the only hospital in rural Pocahontas County, West Virginia. It is a 25 bed critical access hospital with a rural health clinic (RHC) located within the hospital. Like other rural healthcare systems, PMH faces face a myriad of challenges due to geographic isolation, lack of economies of scale, lower socioeconomic status, higher disease burden, and substantial access barriers (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services [HHS], 2010). As a result, PMH struggles with meeting the healthcare needs of the community. Physician demographics also impact community health. The current ratio for primary care physicians (PCPs) to patients in Pocahontas County is 1,730:1, 2,890:1 for dentists, and 2,170:1 for mental health providers (County Health Roadmaps & Rankings, 2016). Perhaps as a result, Pocahontas County exceeds West Virginias average mortality rates for many diseases (WV Department of Health and Human Resources [DHHR], 2014). Subsequently, improving physician demographics should improve health outcomes. Opening an additional RHC will provide many community health benefits. For instance, it will result in a more appropriate use of healthcare services, improve patient safety, and expand service availability (HHS, 2010). However, its feasibility is questionable. Only after examining PMH’s mission, vision, and goals, assessing stakeholder support, identifying environmental
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