Cost of indigent inmate care in limbo

Phoebe Putney Memorial Hospital currently provides health services to indigent inmates for $1.5 million a year / Ashley Knight

Good news coming from the Dougherty County Finance meeting Monday--Phoebe Putney is cutting the cost of its health services they provide to indigent jail inmates.

The contract normally calls for $1.5 million, but Phoebe Attorney Tommy Chambliss told the commission they would lower that to a little over $900,000.

The extra money is allowing the committee to reduce the number of unpaid holidays from nine to three for county employees, but one commissioner says since they did so much for Phoebe back in its early days, they should return the favor and pay 100% of the cost.

"Things are tough now in Dougherty County and Phoebe, since that time, has started paying the indigent care locally through the doors at Phoebe but we still have indigent care out at the jail that's costing us right now about a million and a half a year," says Commissioner Jack Stone.

County Attorney Spencer Lee will go to Phoebe's attorney to get their thoughts and provide feedback at next Monday's meeting.

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