Local School Lends Hand After Hospital Fails Inspection

A Leflore County Hospital shut down part of their facility due to a failed state inspection. The shutdown has caused concern for some in the area.

Tillis Johnson, a Poteau mom, said Eastern Oklahoma Medical Center unable to perform things like child birth and surgeries is adding to her concern for not only her child’s health, but hers as well.

“If someone needed to have surgery or get taken care of, where would they go? What would they do?” said Johnson.

Earlier this month, EOMC said the state inspected the hospital. Multiple deficiencies were found.

Those included things like structural, mechanical and operational problems.

So, the students at Kiamichi Technology Center decided to lend a helping hand.

“Everything from the menial tasks on up to things that the students are working with in their fields,” said Charlie Hayes with Kiamichi Technology. “[These include things] like electrical trades, heating and air conditioning and subjects that the students would learn from as well.”

Bryan Blankenship is well on his way to graduating from the tech center and said he’s applying real life experiences.

“It’s a win, win,” said Blankenship. “They need the helpm, and we need the experience.”

Although help is here, Johnson said concern and questioning is still a bit high.

“Where to get them taken care of [is a big issue],” she said.

The hospital said they plan to have their surgery and child birth operations back up and running in the next four months.

EOMC said they have made arraignments with Sparks and Mercy in Fort Smith to transfer patients in need of the services they cannot offer at this time.