A rural hospital in Garvin County opened Wednesday with new owners after the facility shuttered in 2018 under city ownership.
The facility, named the Southern Plains Medical Center of Garvin County, is operated by the Southern Plains Medical Group based in Chickasha.
“It’s a very good day for the community,” said hospital CEO Richard Mathis. “It’s something they deserve and hopefully we’ll meet the expectations they have of us.”
Mathis said medical services will expand in the coming months. To start, the facility offers X-Rays, CT scans, ultrasounds, and an emergency department.
Services including surgery, diabetes programs and physical therapy will be online later this summer.
“By the end of the third quarter, we should be fully engaged with all our services,” Mathis said.
Thirty-five medical workers staff more than 40 patient rooms, said Nurse Practitioner and Emergency Room Provider John Williamson. Like hospital services, staff will expand as demand increases, he said.
“We have a quality staff that is going to be able to take care of people and so regardless, if we have everything we need, we’re going to be able to provide good patient care. And the rest will come with time,” Williamson said.
The hospital will serve the Pauls Valley and Garvin County communities, which include more than 8,000 individuals of Medicare age, Mathis said.
More than 100 rural hospitals have closed from 2013 to 2020, according to the U.S. Government Accountability Office.
“People in Pauls Valley won’t have to drive up and go to Norman and go to Oklahoma City,” Williamson said. “They’ll be able to stay here to be taken care of by people they know, people in their community, and won’t have to drain resources in the big city.”