Memorial Regional Health expands services to town of Dinosaur
January 16, 2018
CRAIG — People living in and around the town of Dinosaur will soon have weekly access to primary medical care after a lease was signed between Moffat County and Memorial Regional Health allowing part of a county shop to be transformed into a clinic.
"We are happy to be able to help out the town of Dinosaur with their medical needs," said MRH CEO Andy Daniels.
About 1,000 square feet of an existing county shop will be repurposed to provide space for the clinic, which will be open one day per week.
"Our team is on the way to meet a county employee to begin the process of cleaning and painting at MRH cost," Daniels said.
Renovations and internet installation will be completed at MRH's expense. The work is expected to take about 60 days, with the clinic set to open soon after. It will also act as a base for MRH home health and hospice care providers serving the far western part of the county.
The idea for a clinic arose last year, when, at the request of the Dinosaur Town Council, Daniels visited the town in November 2017.
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"Andy has been the first person with Craig that would really sit down and discuss it and try to do something on this end of the county. We pay taxes, and the people feel they should get a little service back," Dinosaur Mayor Richard Blakley said.
The town was seeking a way to bring new providers to Dinosaur after home health and ambulance services from Rangely District Hospital were discontinued about five years ago.
"I told the town council that, if we could make it work as a break even, somehow, we would try to meet their needs," Daniels said.
Terms of the lease stipulate that MRH will pay the county $750 per month — $9,000 per year — with the month of January pro-rated because the premises are not available for the entire month.
Rent was based on fair market value assessed through an MRH study completed last year, Daniels said.
The lease is valid for one year, ending on Dec. 31.
"I think it was a really good deal. They (the town of Dinosaur) sometimes feel left out on the decisions we make, and this is a good step in the right direction," said Moffat County Commissioner Don Cook.
After voting to approve the terms of the lease, all three county commissioners expressed pleasure with the agreement, but perhaps the people most excited by the agreement are the townspeople of Dinosaur.
"I think it's fantastic. I think it's overdue. We are just really happy about it happening," Blakley said.
Contact Sasha Nelson at 970-875-1794 or snelson@CraigDailyPress.com.