Vail Daily’s View: Hospital staying put makes sense |

Vail Daily’s View: Hospital staying put makes sense

Vail Daily Editorial Board
Vail, CO, Colorado

Considering a $400 million price tag and beds not filled up now, the Vail Valley Medical Center’s leadership sounds sensible declaring there’s no imminent move afoot for the hospital’s main campus in Vail.

The months-long discussions and attendant rumors about Avon, Edwards or Wolcott settings sound a little silly even, considering the economics involved in such an expansion.

The hospital’s board brought some clarity to issue this week in a session with the Eagle County Board of Commissioners, which gave the public a rare peek at the hospital board in action. Its meetings are not normally open to the public.

For now — and we’d wager for the long run, too — the hospital will remain in Vail. And that makes sense even with the growth west of Dowd Junction.

At least as sensible is building an emergency and urgent care center in the Gateway center east of the airport. It won’t be a 24-hour center, but it will fill a need and no doubt save lives.

The hospital also is looking at building another health clinic in the Edwards area, possibly in partnership with Eagle County, to better serve uninsured patients. The uninsured and under-insured make up a rather whopping 26 percent of our population.

Vail Valley Medical Center’s iron commitment to treat everyone who needs emergency care saves lives but can strain the hospital’s financial health, too.

The Eagle Care Clinic is helpful for patients who cannot otherwise afford treatment, but the hospital and county can do more in greater partnership than individually. And maybe the school district can be a partner, as well, in setting up community health centers that treat people before they head for the emergency room as much greater cost.

Sharing resources, grant writing, talking frequently with one another and partnering on projects can only benefit the greater community.

It looks to us that the hospital board has settled on the right priorities after months of study and consideration about Vail Valley Medical’s future.

Vail Daily Editorial Board

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