The Rural Medical Facility Investment & Improvement Act of 2012
To : Rural Hospital Supporters
From : Dr. Lonnie L. Hammargren, M.D.
RE : Federal Rural Hospital Legislation
My name is Dr. Lonnie Hammargren, M.D., having been a decorated Vietnam combat physician, NASA Flight Surgeon, University Regent, Nevada’s 31st Lieutenant Governor and practicing Neurosurgeon for over 40 years, I am writing you today to discuss an important issue regarding our deteriorating rural healthcare system which has resulted in the closure of over 20% of our rural hospitals.
Anyone associated with rural healthcare knows that most of our nation’s 2000 plus rural hospitals were built under the Hill Burton Act of 1946 and surpass 50 years of age. Advancements in patient care and medical technology have outpaced these facilities’ abilities to adapt to 21st Century healthcare making them inefficiently obsolete and cost prohibitive to remodel let alone operate. Many rural hospitals are no longer able to serve their community to its fullest, requiring many rural resident’s to travel long distances to receive even basic healthcare services.…