Nurse April Anthony walks in to visit patients Thursday at The Memorial Hospital. The Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association is part of a 12-agency network that was awarded an $85,000 grant to look at what to do with the hospital building after TMH's transition to its new facility later this year.

Photo by Hans Hallgren

Nurse April Anthony walks in to visit patients Thursday at The Memorial Hospital. The Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association is part of a 12-agency network that was awarded an $85,000 grant to look at what to do with the hospital building after TMH's transition to its new facility later this year.

New services network receives $85K federal grant for hospital building study

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A network of 12 Craig-based health and human services groups received an $85,000 grant from the federal government this week.

The network will use the money to examine the feasibility of taking over the current The Memorial Hospital building when it moves to its new facility later this year.

The U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration awarded the funds to the Moffat County Human Service Partnership.

The group includes:

• Northwest Colorado Visiting Nurse Association

• Advocates-Crisis Support Services

• Boys & Girls Club of Craig

• Integrated Community

• Craig/Moffat Economic Development Partnership

• Horizons Specialized Services

• Independent Life Center

• Moffat County Social Services

• Moffat County School District

• Northwest Colorado Dental Coalition

• TMH

• Colorado West Regional Mental Health, the parent group of Craig Mental Health

Suzi Mariano, VNA public information coordinator, said the new network is an extension of the relationship the groups have fostered looking at various community issues before now.

The group's plan is to come together and decide whether the TMH building would be an appropriate place to house one or more of the organizations involved.

"That's why everyone's involved," Mariano said, "to find the best use of this facility and find the needs of each organization."

The group hopes to be able to provide a centralized location for all health and human service groups to better help Northwest Colorado's underserved populations.

The grant money will fund a part-time network coordinator position, who will lead the group in an executive capacity.

The rest of the money will go toward engineering and architectural assessments of the hospital building, both of which will help the group decide whether it's affordable and reasonable to pursue acquiring the building in some way, Mariano said.

The network's formation and the receipt of the grant do not mean the VNA or any other organization is committed to purchasing or renting all or part of the hospital, said Sue Birch, VNA chief executive officer.

"It's too soon to say," she said. "I can tell you we are eager to start working together and engaging the community about what will be the most beneficial use for the hospital building."

U.S. Congressman John Salazar issued a statement regarding the grant award. He reiterated his support for improving rural Colorado health care.

"We all know that rural areas like Moffat County face huge challenges when it comes to health care," Salazar said. "I applaud the goal of the Moffat County Human Service Partnership, and I hope this funding will help it in its mission to create quality, affordable health care for the community and neighbors of Moffat County."

Comments

David Moore 5 years, 6 months ago

Even though it is old and run down, this building can be used with a little work. In my opinion, the college should use it as a training facility for the nursing program, what better place to learn nursing than in an actual setting. They could practice emergency medicine, OB, Surgery, and have room for classrooms and more. Just an idea.

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oldsage 5 years, 6 months ago

Not good enough for a hospital but good enough to train hospital employees. yea right!

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50cal 5 years, 6 months ago

brew pub and bar, with a few pole dancers, we could make back a few of those stimulas dollars

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lonelyone 5 years, 6 months ago

50cal, is back!! wohoo and with a great sense of humor!!!

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David Moore 5 years, 6 months ago

"Not good enough for a hospital but good enough to train hospital employees. yea right!"

No, not good enought to do modern healthcare, too small for 160 employees plus patients, family, friends, reps, visitors, etc., ever been in a pt. room? Ever had to navigate the narrow halls pushing a 300# person on a 150# cart? Come look in each department and see how we have crammed all the equipment and supplies to do our jobs...then there is us, where do we stand? It's terrible and unless you have worked it, you have no clue.

Yes, more than adequate to train nurses and other allied healthcare personell who's numbers would be much smaller than what the building contains on a day to day basis right now. A couple dozen nurse trainees and support staff could easily use this building and have all the training aides right at their disposal. What do they have now...mock ups, classrooms? Hands on training is always the best way to learn as is being in the proper setting, this building would be perfect for them.

Remove the old part and you still have alot of good facility left...just not enough to effectivly run a MODERN hospital, keyword being modern here. This hospital is in no way modern, it has done it's duty and it's time to retire it and move on....which we are in full gear preparing for.

Are you interested in a tour oldsage, I can show you why, or do you have a better idea? Let's hear it but please, stick to reality. You know where to find me, everyone here knows me, just walk in the door and ask.

I'm just happy to see more than the VNA interested in it, something good will eventually become of this place.

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AltitudeAdjustment 5 years, 6 months ago

I think most people hope that area of town doesn't become blighted when the hospital leaves. If you read closely you will see that it was the VNA who is spearheading this effort. I think it will cost more money than most of those organizations have to remodel and use it in a constructive way. I have also heard it would cost a lot to knock down and a lot more to remodel since there are so many things wrong with it. When the hospital was looking at moving (and thank God they are moving) they showed us all how bad the place was. They showed us old boilers, asbestos, broken duct work, and a leaky roof. Just to fix those items I would guess that it would be hundreds of thousands of dollars.

I hope this money can be used to get a better idea of what needs to be done with the old girl and hopefully point them in the right direction on how to make it happen.

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David Moore 5 years, 6 months ago

"Just to fix those items I would guess that it would be hundreds of thousands of dollars." That's being light AltitudeAdjustment, way light, by at least a few million. This is the very reason that they did not go with a remodel, it would have been a waste putting millions into old infrastructure. The plan that was originally thought up was actually a nice building, just in the wrong place and with the wrong idea on how to build it. Location was a big issue, the neighborhood just did not want it there anymore, if it was expanding they wanted it to do that elsewhere. The new one is in a perfect location and is going to be a very nice facility that is functional and convenient to the patients. The layout is very effective in the flow of emergencies and outpatients coming in and out. I have already been up a couple times and I am quite impressed. After nearly 20 years of looking at plans and hearing that we were going to build...it is exciting to actually see it happening. I also agree there will be some affect on the downtown area but not anything devastating. Put something else in there and it can make up for it pretty easy. If all efforts fail, raze it and build some houses to fill up the block.

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