Banner Payson Medical Center

Banner Payson Medical Center has recently been designated as a Critical Access Hospital by the federal government, a move that further strengthens the hospital’s ability to provide high-quality, individualized care to its patients.

“This is really an exciting development for us,” said Lance Porter, CEO of Banner Payson Medical Center.

“It speaks to the quality of care that we provide as a community health care organization and it will allow us to provide care that is even more tailored to our patients’ specific needs.”

The hospital recently received word that its petition to be designated a Critical Access Hospital was approved by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The federal Critical Access Hospital program works to reduce the financial vulnerability of rural hospitals and improve access to health care by keeping essential services in rural communities.

There are about 1,340 Critical Access Hospitals in the United States; 14 of them are in Arizona. To be considered for designation, a hospital must have 25 or fewer beds; be located more than 35 miles from another hospital and provide around-the-clock emergency care services.

As a Critical Access Hospital, Banner Payson is now able to provide a Swing Bed program which allows hospitalized patients, those recovering from illness, injury, or surgery, to receive additional skilled care before being discharged or returning home.

In some cases, a patient may even stay in the same hospital bed, as they require less-intensive services.

While in the Swing Bed program, patients will receive a wide range of hospital-based rehabilitation services such as physical therapy, respiratory therapy, occupational therapy, recreational therapy, and speech therapy — all of which can be designed to meet their specific needs. Banner Payson’s new wound-care program is also available to them.

With the Swing Bed program, there is minimal disruption to the patient’s healing and there is no need for them to transfer to another facility.

How long patients stay in the Swing Bed program depends on their needs and condition. Patients can stay generally a few days to a few weeks.

The program is accepted by most insurance plans, including Medicare.

“Providing swing beds means our patients will be able to avoid additional transfers. It will allow them to recuperate in the hospital where they will have access to physicians and specialists to meet their needs,” said Porter.

“Even if patients choose to have surgery in the Valley they can still choose to come back here for rehab,” he said. “It is closer to home and to the loved ones who will want to support them.”

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