Hospital should open after a few more papers are filed

Published: Thursday, July 29, 2010 3:29 PM MST 

Florence Community Healthcare’s long-awaited opening day was being held up earlier this week by architectural “close-out” documents required by the state. A hospital official was confident the correct papers were being provided and the facility would be open “at the latest, the first part of next week.”

As the licensing process took longer than expected, hospital officials met with employees Monday to announce furloughs for those without enough to do. Some took the time off voluntarily and some are still working part-time, according to Gary Faulkner, vice president of business development for Initiatives Healthcare. The furloughs aren’t expected to last more than a few days, he said.

Other state inspections have gone well, Faulkner said. “The state came down and did the medical inspection, which we did well on.”

But the Arizona Department of Health Services earlier this week was still awaiting architectural paperwork showing all the hospital’s equipment meets life, safety and health codes. “Some minor things had to be verified,” Faulkner said. “… It had nothing to do patient care, it was strictly on the mechanical side.”

The town of Florence has also been in touch with the hospital, “asking if there’s any way the town can assist,” town spokesman Jess Knudson said Tuesday.