Granite Co. hospital seeks levy help to "keep doors open" - KPAX.com | Continuous News | Missoula & Western Montana

Granite Co. hospital seeks levy help to "keep doors open"

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PHILIPSBURG - Granite County Medical Center's administrator says renewal of the current hospital levy is critical to balancing the thin margin between operational costs, and the on-going problem with patient debt facing many of Montana's small hospitals. 

That's why the hospital district will be asking voters to renew the levy when they cast ballots this summer. Granite County commissioners have approved a vote June 5 to renew the Granite County hospital levy, which expires next year.  

The new levy is a three-year package that at $400,000 per year works out to $42.85 each year on a $100,000 of assessed valuation.  CEO Maria Stoppler says that's just over $2 higher than the present levy.

The hospital is attempting to balance what's needed for operations, and what Granite County residents can afford, but Stoppler says the funding is very important to close the gap between declining reimbursements, and rising patient debt.

"We do rely on the support of our county to meet our operational shortfalls. We do operate on a financial edge with no margin to make up for any lost reimbursements, so we really rely on the support of our community to keep our doors open and continue to provide services locally," Stoppler said.

The new levy would take effect in July 2019 if the measure is approved by voters.

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