Tommy Mann Jr.
The Orange Leader
The sound of crying newborn babies in the delivery room will soon become a thing of the past at Baptist Orange Hospital.
Baptist Orange Hospital announced Monday it will no longer offer services caring for women’s reproductive tracts and their children during pregnancy or pre-natal period, childbirth and post-natal period, effective May 2, 2013. The decision to discontinue the obstetrical service line was solely based on finances.
Mary Poole, a spokesperson for Baptist Orange Hospital, issued a press release Monday which stated Baptist Orange Hospital has received Medicaid Disproportionate Share Hospital (DSH) payments for several years, but hospital officials learned in 2012 that funding would no longer be available. This reimbursement is used to offset costs of providing care for people who are either uninsured or Medicaid patients who are not covered by Medicaid payments.
“Hospitals throughout the state of Texas and across the nation all face significant challenges with decreased reimbursements and rising underinsured and uninsured populations,” Poole stated in the press release. “Hospitals are implementing strategies to mitigate these negative impacts, and at the same time, are making changes which ensure their community strength for the long term.”
The change is being made as an effort to protect and ensure the availability of other non-obstetric inpatient and outpatient services in Orange, the press release continued, as the services being discontinued, along with nursery and post-partum, cannot be sustained without these much needed funds.
“Difficult decisions must be made to insure that Baptist Orange Hospital can fulfill the commitment of service and remain a viable community resource well into the future,” stated Jarren Garrett, Chief Administrative Officer of Baptist Orange Hospital. “These efforts will allow Baptist Orange Hospital to restructure resources to provide critical services, such as tele-medicine for stroke patients, higher level of emergency services and high quality imaging. Partnered with the services available at Baptist Beaumont Hospital, this difficult decision is strengthening the future of Baptist Orange Hospital.”