- Georgia: Habersham Medical Center in Demorest and Habersham County have entered into a financial arrangement under which the county makes monthly bond payments on the hospital's $37 million debt as the county slowly takes over the facility's assets. According to officials, the county promotes itself to tourists and potential retirees as being a medical destination, so keeping the hospital viable is essential to the area's income. Four rural hospitals have closed in Georgia over the past two years (Miller, Georgia Health News, 7/21).
Georgia's rural hospitals are closing. The governor says he can save them.
- Ohio: Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center's Ross Heart Hospital is slated to open a $3.5 million hybrid OR/cardiac catheterization lab in 2015 as part of the system's $1.1 billion expansion. Hybrid ORs, a concept that began in the last decade, combine the imaging equipment of catheterization lab procedures with the equipment and sterile precautions needed for surgery. Such suites enable multidisciplinary teams to complete several procedures without moving patients (Ghose, Columbus Business First, 7/21).
- Washington: Writing in the Washington Post this week, Nancy Szokan highlights how pediatric oncologist Jim Olson created a compound—Tumor Paint—that when injected into a patient with cancer, lights up all the malignant cells so surgeons can easily remove them without harming healthy cells. With the integral ingredient in the compound being taken from the deathstalker scorpion, Seattle-based Olson struggled to raise money from grant-making medical groups. He was finally able to bring his compound to life with funds donated from families of current and former patients and the compound is in clinical trials (Szokan, Washington Post, 7/21).
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