IU Health Starke Hospital would be such in name only if the health care corporation moves forward with plans to replace the existing facility. Management recommends building a single-story structure with four medical/surgical beds, that is slightly more than half the size of the current hospital. The 36,000 square-foot-facility would be behind the existing building for a cost of $11.8 million and would open in 2016. County Commissioner Jennifer Davis shared an overview of the plan during a special joint meeting between the council and commissioners and called the proposed facility “disappointing and almost insulting.”
“They said to me, ‘How many beds would you consider a hospital? How many beds would you consider?’ In my own background, my own work, I said 12. If we run a daily census of 10 to 13, 12 ought to do it. I asked them if there was any possibility of 12, and they said absolutely not,” said Davis.
Officials from IU Health LaPorte plan to present this vision to the IU Health board of directors in Indianapolis next month in order to secure funding to proceed. The council and commissioners discussed the matter at length during a special session meeting and decided to send a letter to IU Health officials formally expressing their disagreement with the proposal and asking for a 12-bed facility with four new physicians and $11.8 million in escrow until the physicians are in place or an alternative agreeable solution. View copies of the IU Health Proposal for Starke County by clicking here.