Weather Forecast


Where are all the patients? Inpatient care down at Rice, outpatient up


WILLMAR -- There used to be a time when Rice Memorial Hospital had 60 or more patients occupying beds on a daily basis.

Then the number slid to 50, then to 40.

Inpatient volume has dropped sharply again in the past couple of months, and hospital officials are beginning to suspect this might be permanent.

Patient admissions are 10 to 12 percent lower than they were a year ago, said Bill Fenske, the hospital's chief financial officer.

Are you a newspaper subscriber but you don't have a Digital Access account yet?

You will need your subscription account number and phone number. Not sure if you have an account? Email us at and we can help you.

Anne Polta

Anne Polta covers health care, business/economic development and general assignment. Her HealthBeat blog can be found at Follow her on Twitter at @AnnePolta.

(320) 235-1150