published Thursday, March 10th, 2011

Residents turn out in droves for Hutcheson forum

by Emily Bregel

Close to 200 concerned community members turned out for a town hall meeting tonight to discuss the future of Hutcheson Medical Center, the embattled Fort Oglethorpe community hospital.

The meeting started with Walker County Commissioner Bebe Heiskell giving a brief recap of the foundation of Hutcheson, as well as its recent challenges.

Negotiations with Chattanooga’s Erlanger hospital about a strategic partnership agreement with Hutcheson are going well, she said.

“It appears we’re going to be able to seamlessly keep the hospital open and operational as we transition it from Hutcheson to a Hutcheson-Erlanger partnership,” she said.

“We’re here to save this hospital and keep it open,” said Dade County Executive Ted Rumley, as the crowd broke into applause. “We’re here to do what’s right for our three counties and what’s right for Hutcheson,” he said.

For complete details, see tomorrow’s Times Free Press.

about Emily Bregel...

Health care reporter Emily Bregel has worked at the Chattanooga Times Free Press since July 2006. She previously covered banking and wrote for the Life section. Emily, a native of Baltimore, Md., earned a bachelor’s degree in American Studies from Columbia University. She received a first-place award for feature writing from the East Tennessee Society of Professional Journalists’ Golden Press Card Contest for a 2009 article about a boy with a congenital heart defect. She ...

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