Healthcare has changed; one hospital is best

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, June 3, 2008

I am writing to express my full support and to applaud Dr. Keith Schwager and the Homochitto Valley Medical Society and their action of unanimously supporting the unification of healthcare in Natchez as written in their June 2, letter to the editor.

In our recent meetings of the Natchez Community Hospital Physician Leadership Council, there has been a lot of discussion around the benefits unified healthcare would bring to Natchez.

Opponents to unified healthcare in Natchez would argue that patients prefer choice. Competing hospital institutions offer choice and, therefore, competition drives improvements to service and quality. This was the argument used back in the early 1970s when a group of our community’s physicians successfully led an effort to add a second hospital to Natchez, known today as Natchez Community Hospital. I believe that back in the early 1970s, these were very valid arguments.

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In today’s healthcare environment, through advances in technology and the focus being placed on hospital transparency and quality at the national level, the quality of care delivered in Natchez hospitals today is higher than ever.

What is important in today’s healthcare environment of diminishing resources and increasing numbers of uninsured patients is eliminating duplication of services and wasting vital healthcare dollars. That is why I agree fully with Dr. Schwager and the Homochitto Valley Medical Society.

Please know that Natchez Community Hospital is as strong today as ever during this unusual time for our medical community.

Also, please know that the team at Natchez Community Hospital remains fully committed to the highest quality of care and the highest patient, physician and employee satisfaction today and for our future.

Timothy R. Trottier

Chief Executive Officer

Natchez Community Hospital