Baby boomers are becoming the fastest aging group in America, closing in on the heels of the world war two generation.With those numbers increasing, health care, especially in more rural part of the country becomes more of a problem. In the first of a two part series, we take a look at the changing face of health care in outlying areas across ths area.
Used to be, that just about any medical problem in the past required a long trip into a city where there was adequate care... and between Dallas and Denver there were very few options.
A little more than a year ago, Borger opened up the new Golden Plains Community Hospital to what many, like CEO Dennis Jack, believe is the new face of rural health care.
"Doing some of the procedures here instead of going to Amarillo. as the population ages, the big referral hospital don't have room and so rural hospitals if they want to survive, have to provide more of those services," said Jack.
And new facilities like this are doing just that.
In Borger, 4 new doctors, including a full time surgeon and OB-GYN, a 25 bed unit that's ready for expansion when needed, cutting art radiology--and all built from the ground up in a once in a lifetime opportunity of a new facility.
"We put everything into this hospital, not going to come around for a long time..."
And it's really changing the face of rural health care across the area. No longer are you required to drive to Amarillo, Oklahoma City or Lubbock for treatment on a wide variety of ailments of medical procedures.
"We have doctors here I'd put up against any Amarillo doctor. We can handle it...we have ill patients and we can manage it. "
But what about town that don't have a brand new hospital? There are other concerns that people at places like Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center are already addressing, according to their president, Tedd Mitchell.
"It's not high tech.The simple way is the better way It's a microchasm of the condition of this country..."
And finding those answers about better rural health care is what we'll focus on in the final part of series.