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Texas children's hospital seeks to ease $59 million debt

By The Associated Press

This article was published March 29, 2014 at 12:58 p.m.

— A West Texas children's hospital that opened in 2012 is $59 million in debt and will work with another medical center to ease the deficit.

Officials with the El Paso Children's Hospital will meet in April with University Medical Center executives to modify the terms of the debt, which comes due in September.

UMC spokesman Margaret Althoff-Olivas says the 2008 recession, federal changes in reimbursement payments and changes in the state's Medicaid waiver program led to the hospital's financial problems.

The El Paso Times reports the children's hospital has repaid more than $33 million to UMC for start-up costs, leasing and contracted services.

Taxpayers in 2007 approved a $120 million bond to build the hospital. The 122-bed facility is about 60 percent occupied and shares space with UMC.

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