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Already in peril, rural hospitals unsure on health care bill
Evans Memorial among those struggling
W Evans Memorial Hospital
In this March 9 photo, Nikki NeSmith, CEO of Evans Memorial Hospital, stands outside the hospital in Claxton, Ga. Like other hospitals in the rural U.S., Evans Memorial has struggled financially in recent years, and NeSmith has doubled as its chief nursing officer, in part to help save money. We do not have fear of the doors closing, but we remember those days and we never get comfortable, said NeSmith. - photo by Associated Press
CLAXTON — Talmadge Yarbrough had just sat down at his desk and opened a box of pecans when he let out a gasp that could have been his last breath. He'd gone into cardiac arrest in his office, a co-worker called 911, and an ambulance drove him two miles to the small hospital that serves this rural community in southeast Georgia."I would have never lasted to get to Savannah or Statesboro," Yarbrough said of the biggest cities near Claxton — each 30 to 60 miles away. "I firmly believe if that hospital wasn't here, I wouldn't be here."But like Yarbrough, the 10-bed Evans Memorial Hospital has fought to survive.
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