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Friday, October 25, 1996

Firm seeks health agency link for RCH

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Staff Writer

PECOS, October 25, 1996 - Reeves County Hospital District and local
physicians would benefit by a home health service operated by the
hospital, Roger Long told the board of directors Thursday.

Long offered the management services of HealthCorp of Tennessee Inc. to
create a home health department, train the employees, keep records and
bill patients.

He estimated the hospital could make 31,000 visits in its second year of
operation, bringing in $1.79 million in revenue - most from Medicare.

Most home health patients are covered by Medicare, Long said. A hospital
is paid by the diagnosis for in-hospital Medicare patients, but a home
health agency is paid on a cost basis.

Because the hospital could charge costs for administration, space and
other overhead to the home health department, reimbursement would be
more than for a private home health agency, Long said.

"Administrators recycle patients through their facility with their
doctors' help," Long said. "They are discharged to home health. A lot of
the time the same nurses are seeing them in the home."

In the beginning, HealthCorp would utilize part-time nurses for the home
visits, paying them per visit, Long said. "That way you won't have
nurses on salary sitting round doing nothing."

Long said HealthCorp would provide all the computers and software
required for record keeping and the staff to operate them. Their
management fee would be $11 per home visit.

Even their fee is reimbursed by Medicare, so it costs the hospital
nothing, he said.

Medicare's reimbursement limit is about $60-$65 per visit, and the
hospital's actual cost is bout $40. Additional costs allocated to home
health care would be the hospital's margin.

"It is not profit, but money coming back that you won't get under other
Medicare programs," Long said.

RCH Chief Executive Officer Terry Andris said that the Andrews hospital
has almost $1 million a year margin from home health reimbursements.

Dr. Orville Cerna asked what the benefit is for physicians.

"It keeps the patient in the loop," Long said.

HealthCorp contacts doctors in surrounding towns to encourage them to
refer patients to the local hospital for home health care, he said.

But they would not try to woo patients who already are using a private
home health agency, Long said. Pecos has two private agencies, American
Home Health Agency and Pecos Home Health Agency.

New patients at the hospital's agency would be those discharged from the
hospital or referred by their physicians.

Marcella Lovett asked if young mothers on Medicaid would be covered.

"Medicaid doesn't use home health that much," Long said. "A mother is an
aide-type visit, making sure everything is done daily."

Medicaid reimbursement is only $28 per visit, he said.

Andris said he would give board members and the medical staff detailed
information on HealthCorp and it would be discussed further at a later

"If you don't go with a management company, go into home health
somehow," Long said. "It is a great way to get money reimbursed that you
used to under the old health care plan."

Andris said that home health provides a service to the patient, who is
likely to get better quicker in his own home.

Alleged gang members indicted by grand jurors

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Staff Writer

PECOS, October 25, 1996 - Five members of a "criminal street gang" were
among 22 persons indicted Thursday by the Reeves County grand jury.

Several drug indictments and one attempted murder indictment were also
returned during Thursday's proceedings.

The five are charged with aggravated assault in the July 21 beating of
Ruben Mendoza with a bat and a shovel in the 700 block of South Eddy
Street. As gang members, the defendants are also charged with conspiring
to commit the offense.

Named are Jose Urias, 21, Charlie Arenivas, 17, Gilberto M. Rayos, 26,
Joe Machuca, 21, and Gabriel Gonzales, 19. Their bail is set at $15,000

Mendoza was hospitalized, as was his sister, Lupe, who was also beaten
and had to undergo surgery in Odessa as a result of the beating.
However, the assault on Lupe Mendoza was not included in Thursday's

Others indicted are John Natividad, 19, burglary of a building owned by
Jerry Smith on June 9 and burglary of a habitation owned by Elsa
Martinez on June 18. Bail is $15,000 on the first charge and $25,000 on
the second.

* Gilbert Chavez, 24, possession of heroin on July 22, bail $10,000;

* Robert Jimenez, 17, attempted murder of Eliseo Lujan by shooting with
a 9mm Ruger handgun on Sept. 22, bail $50,000;

* Aguedo Rubio, 27, burglary of a building owned by Saul Valeriano on
June 3, bail $15,000;

* Thomas Hinojos Marquez, 28, burglary of a building owned by Saul
Valeriano on June 3, bail $15,000;

* Oscar Rodriguez Rubio, 31, burglary of a habitation owned by Salvador
Lozano Jr. on June 10, bail $25,000;

* Mireya Munoz, 27, possession of cocaine on May 3, bail $10,000.

* Jose Manuel Minjarez, 37, possession of more than four grams but less
than 200 grams of cocaine with intent to deliver on May 16, bail $25,000;

* Manuel Martinez Salcido, 46, possession of heroin on April 29; four
prior convictions; bail $25,000.

* Maria Ornelas, burglary of a habitation owned by Georgina Garcia on
Sept. 7, bail $25,000.

* Alejandra Ornelas, 59, burglary of a habitation owned by Georgina
Garcia on Sept. 7, bail $25,000.

* Manuel Melendez Quiroz, aggravated assault on May 12, bail $25,000.
Quiroz allegedly caused bodily injury to Reeves County Sheriff's Deputy
Larry Humphries by striking him and slamming a door on him.

* Cruz Jimenez, 23, burglary of a building owned by Jerry Smith on June
9, bail $15,000.

* Jesus Martinez, 19, burglary of a building owned by Jerry Smith on
June 9, bail $15,000.

* Arturo Munoz, 29, possession of cocaine on May 3, bail $10,000.

P-B-T elementary schools

make magazines honor list

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PECOS, October 25, 1996 - Two local schools were recognized in the
November issue of <fn11>Texas Monthly whose editors dubbed, "Our Best

The column is featured on page 112 of the magazine and outlines the
rating system used to identify the 3,172 elementary schools in Texas.
The mentions that the editors "believe in," the scoring process because,
"it measures the quality of a school by how far the school took its kids
compared with where the kids started."

The two local campuses included in the roster were Pecos Elementary and
Bessie Haynes Elementary.

According the article, the system was developed by Darvin M. Winick of
the Center for Houston's Future, an affiliate of the Greater Houston
Partnership, and Larry Toenjes, a University of Houston sociologist.

The scoring methodolgy is based on the percentage of children who pass
all sections of the Texas Assessment of Academic Skills (TAAS) and the
percentage of kids on the free or assisted lunch program, reflecting an
accurate number of how many students come from impoverished backgrounds.

The latter group of students are generally at a cultural and educational
disadvantage and tend to score lower on standardized tests.

The editorial states that the, "Winick-Toenjes system," compares schools
will similar numbers of disadvantaged students.

Bessie Haynes fell in the, "three star," category which designated
schools where at least 70 percent of the students passed the TAAS. In
the "second star" category, where Pecos Elementary is listed, students
ranked at or above the median passing rate on the TAAS.

The TAAS is used, the column states, because it is the one consistent,
uniform statewide measure of what students are learning.


Walter Oren

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Walter Kenneth Oren, 83, died Tuesday, Oct. 22 at Odessa Medical Center

Services are scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday at the Pecos Funeral Home
Chapel with burial at Fairview Cemetery.

He was born Aug. 14, 1913, in Memphis, Tx., was a Baptist and a retired
U.S. Postal employee.

Survivors include one son, Charles Martin Oren of San Angelo; four
daughters, Olyse Whitley and Anna B. Anderson of Alpine, Dolores Powell
of Hampton, Va., Theresa Oren of El Paso; one sister, Lula Faye
Singleton of Ruff Reddy, Calif., eight grandchildren and eight

Pecos Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

Fay Starley Creech

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Fay Hudson Starley Creech, 78, died Wednesday, Oct. 23, at her Midland

Memorial services were held today at 1 p.m. at St. Nicholas Episcopal
Church. Graveside services will be held on Monday, at 10 a.m. at St.
John's Episcopal Church in New Braunfels.

She was born Feb. 25, 1918 in Pecos, where she was reared and educated.
She attended Sul Ross State University, Texas Christian University and
the University of Texas at Austin. She moved to Midland in 1948.

She was preceded in death by her husband, J.R. Creech on Oct. 6, 1995.

Survivors include one son, Robert S. Creech of Springdale, Ark.; two
daughters, Louise Murphy and Carolyn Creech of Midland; 10
grandchildren; one niece and one nephew.

The family requests that in lieu of flowers memorials be made to Hospice
of Midland, P.O. Box 2621, Midland, Tx. 79702.

Ellis Funeral Home of Midland is in charge of arrangements.


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PECOS, October 25, 1996 - High Thursday 80, low last night 41
Tonight, partly cloudy and breezy. Low in the mid 50s. Southwest wind
15-25 mph early, diminishing to 5-15 mph by midnight. Saturday, partly
cloudy. A 20 percent chance of showers or thunderstorms. High 75-80.
South to southwest wind 10-20 mph.
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Copyright 1996 by Pecos Enterprise
Division of Buckner News Alliance, Inc.
324 S. Cedar St., Pecos, TX 79772
Phone 915-445-5475, FAX 915-445-4321
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