June 22, 2024

The Monroe County Hospital is now managed by Aletheia Health Partners. The merge happened in November 2023.

MONROE COUNTY, Ga. — The Monroe County Hospital changed management partners.

Last year we reported the local hospital is no longer working with Atrium Health Navicent after seven years.

The hospital now works with Aletheia Health Partners based in Watkinsville.

The CEO, Terrell Neal, said the Monroe County Hospital has been around since the 50s. Now working with Aletheia, the CEO said the hospital plans to add more services to people in and around Monroe County.

Michael Azzolin is the CEO of Aletheia. He said their focus is the success of rural hospitals.

“It’s where our passion lies and it’s our desire for these rural communities to thrive and for these hospitals to be sustainable for the patients and the communities that they serve,” Azzolin said.

Azzolin said they’re no stranger to the local hospital. He said they’ve been working together for nearly a decade.

“Our pharmacy company has been managing the hospital pharmacy in this hospital since 2015. We’ve been blessed enough to be partners here in that sister company for a while,” Azzolin said.

Aletheia started their relationship with Monroe County Hospital six months ago.

Kerry Trapnell is the Chief Administrative Officer for Aletheia and saw potential in the hospital.

“This is a community that’s growing and we kind of wanted to take hold of that and wanted to keep our employees here,” Trapnell said.

In order to do that, they increased pay wages. Katie Franklin is a registered nurse in the emergency room. She said she was grateful for the pay raise.

“I mean it’s not all about money but it does help for a lot of the things we do. It makes us want to pick up overtime and be here and be able to be more,” Franklin said.

The new management hired Neal as their CEO two months ago.

He said working in a smaller facility gives his staff, the patients and the community more access to him. 

“I think that’s a big part of it seeing it for yourself living in it day in and day out. It helps you know what the community needs and the community sees you as a resource and as accessible, so they can let you know what they need as well,” Neal said.

Trapnell said since November, the hospital has made tremendous progress.

“Our operating income is up over 90% and our net income is up over 533% since last year so this hospital went from losing money every single month for the last several years to now it’s at break even or profitable every month since we’ve been here,” Trapnell said.

At the end of the day, Trapnell said this hospital does not belong to Aletheia.

“It’s not owned by another company, another organization, or another town. It’s not owned by us. It is the local hospital this hospital is a community hospital; it belongs to the community,” Trapnell said.

Aletheia Health Partners also manages the Washington County Regional Medical Center.

RELATED: Monroe County Hospital changes management partners after seven years with Atrium Navicent

RELATED: ‘This has become probably the biggest problem we have’: Monroe County Sheriff wants expansion at the jail

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