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GA looks to reopen some closed hospitals as ERs

NPR, May 29, 2014
An ambulance races down an empty street in Folkston, Ga., population about 5,000. It bypasses Charlton Memorial Hospital, makes a sharp right turn and speeds to an emergency room 40 miles away. Why? Because Charlton Memorial Hospital has been closed since last August. Four of Georgia's 65 rural hospitals have shut down over the past two years. A dozen more have cut services in response to shrinking budgets. There just wasn't enough money to keep Charlton Memorial going, says Doug Gowen, who stayed and is in charge of what's left of the defunct hospital. A small staff handles the medical records accumulated when it was still in business.