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(Houston) – Missouri state congressional representatives, Robert Ross, House of Representatives 142nd district representative, Mike Cunningham, Senate 33rd district representative’s, and Jason Smith, the newly elected US congressman for Missouri’s 8th district have all visited TCMH and spoke with Wes Murray, chief executive officer at TCMH about Medicaid expansion.

Murray said that out state representatives have been talking with all of the area hospitals and that TCMH is optimistic that they will make the moves needed for state Medicaid expansion when congress reconvenes for the fall session.

Many hospitals across the nation are facing financial woes and it’s not just the rural hospitals that are affected. Murray noted that those hospitals like TCMH that have higher numbers of uninsured, Medicare and Medicaid patients recently have been “hit harder.

Murray shared with the board during the July 23 meeting that plans of adding a fast track or an urgent care tract to the emergency department for weekend peak times has been placed on hold.

This decision was made by Murray, and Dr. Jeff Kerr, TCMH emergency department medical director, due to revenues being down for the year.

For now the emergency department will continue to track peak times and patient numbers and put a plan in place to better utilize staff on hand and available space in the new department during any peak times when the department is very busy.

Dr. Kerr shared that while a fast track or urgent care is our goal, they don’t want to set such services up to fail because it is too early to take on such an expense.

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