Mesa County Commissioners Ask Community Hospital to Take Over Clinic
KREX News Room
GRAND JUNCTION, Colo.- After a unanimous vote from Mesa County Commissioners this week, county officials have begun negotiating with Community Hospital to take over health care services for those on the County's insurance plan.
In November of 2010, Mesa County opened a clinic under the management of Novia CareClinics, based out of Indiana.
The clinic provides basic health care, lab tests and prescription medications to those on Mesa County's insurance plan in hopes of decreasing the number of expensive medical claims on the plan.
Unfortunately, that plan has been unsuccessful this year.
"2013 has been a hard year for us because we've has some major claims that have hit our plan," said Sheryl Coffey, Assistant Director of Human Resources for Mesa County.
This forced county officials to take County to reconsider whether keeping the clinic open was worth the money.
Four companies made a bid for the contract to provide medical services for the plan, but Community hospital got the nod mainly due to reduced costs and the fact it is a local company.
"The overall costs of the clinic based on what we've paid this year and based what Community Hospital came back with is about a $100,000 difference," said Coffey
Community Hospital already partners with District 51 to provide health services for their employees, and is looking to partner with several other businesses across the valley.
"One of the things Community Hospital would like to do is partner more with employer groups to help lower their increasing health care costs and look at improving the health of their population," said Connie Mack, Vice President of Development for Community Hospital.
Mesa County officials are unsure if this change will impact the cost of health insurance on the County's plan.
"We'll do some plan design changes which will probably result in some premium changes," said Coffey. "Whether or not these premium changes stay the same or go up, we haven't finalized those yet."
Once the contract is negotiated, Mesa County Commissioners will hold a vote for final approval.
The contract would go into effect on January 1, 2014.