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How West Virginia's Largest Health Systems are Prepping for the Future

West Virginia Morning
West Virginia Public Broadcasting

On this West Virginia Morning, nationally, nearly a quarter of all rural hospitals are struggling to stay open. In West Virginia, almost 40 percent of rural hospitals are at risk of closure. There are several reasons for that. 

“Inability to recruit physicians to small communities, declining population base, roughly 10,000 people a day go on Medicare and Medicare doesn’t cover the cost of care in a hospital environment,” Dave Ramsey, CEO and president of Charleston Area Medical Center, said.

And yet some hospitals in rural areas are doing well -- or at least growing. Those that are succeeding are often the largest facilities. Kara Lofton takes a look at the three biggest health systems in West Virginia, and what they are doing to prepare for the future.

Also on today’s show, Wheeling's Jewish community got together over the weekend to celebrate 170 years in the Ohio Valley. Glynis Board sat down with Rabbi Joshua Lief who grew up in the congregation. The rabbi says he’s proud to be a part of a legacy of resilient, caring people with deep, multi-generational roots in the Mountain State. We hear a segment of that conversation.

West Virginia Morning is a production of West Virginia Public Broadcasting, which is solely responsible for its content.

Support for our news bureaus comes from West Virginia University, Concord University, and Shepherd University.