For healthcare reform to mature unimpeded, the debates surrounding the Affordable Care Act require concentrated, nonpartisan attention. And for reform to succeed, we also need hospitals to flourish, especially in places with few options.
Every hospital has a story to tell. Lower Oconee Community Hospital will not keep the nation’s attention for long, but its absence and that of other hospitals that close will certainly leave profound voids throughout their communities. Rather than ignore these continuing cracks in the foundation of our evolving healthcare system, there is much to be learned from these now-defunct facilities. We would do well to address the underlying problems behind the closures.
As any medical practitioner will tell you, it is wiser to treat the cause today than alleviate the symptoms tomorrow.