County to Negotiate with Tallahassee Memorial for Weems Management

Franklin County Commissioners voted Thursday to enter into negotiations with Alliant and Tallahassee Memorial Hospital to manage Weems Memorial Hospital.

The move was recommended by the Weems Hospital Board of Directors.

Doug Creamer, chairman of the board of directors, said they recommended Alliant because it allows the county to keep the current hospital and medical clinics and also allows the hospital to continue to manage the local ambulance service.

The other option was Ascension Sacred Heart, but the board did not like their proposal which would have required the county to convert the hospital into a free-standing Emergency Room with patients going to the Sacred Heart hospital in Port St. Joe.

The Ascension proposal would have also required the county to hire a management company for the ambulance service.

Creamer said the board put a lot of hours into their recommendation and realize that neither choice would make everyone happy.

County commissioners were unanimous in their desire to keep the hospital in operation, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic when every hospital bed is needed.

At this point the county is only opening negotiations with Alliant/TMH so they do not what the costs will be.

The board named County coordinator Michael Moron and Weems CEO David Walker to head up the negotiations.