Archived Story

Supervisors should keep on pressing

Published 12:06am Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Last week, Adams County Supervisors acknowledged finally receiving financial information they requested approximately two months ago from bankrupt Natchez Regional Medical Center.

As in practically every move related to its bankruptcy and nearly yearlong sales process, the county-owned hospital has been slow to respond to practically any request for information.

County leaders had requested financial information in March when the hospital sought a line of credit with a local bank. County leaders signed off on a bank requirement that regular financial reports from the hospital be provided as a stipulation of loaning Natchez Regional money.

The urgent need for cash forced the hospital to provide routine financial documentation that one could argue should have been regularly reported to the hospital’s public owners by way of their rightful representatives, the county supervisors.

We continue to urge supervisors to press the state auditor and attorney general to study exactly how the hospital burned through so much cash so quickly. It’s difficult to imagine that the hospital became headed for bankruptcy after receiving a huge, unexpected gift in the form of a multi-million dollar settlement in a lawsuit against its former management company.

That illogical occurrence, along with the seemingly constant foot-dragging when it comes to providing the public information, make us fearful that the hospital’s leadership may have engaged in financial mismanagement of what is arguably a public trust.

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