Other doc’s contract not renewed
By RACHEL COLEMAN
Leader & Times
The announcement that OBGYN physician Lamberto “B.J.” Flores’ employment with Southwest Medical Center has been terminated caused some patients to panic, said SWMC publicist Nancy Kletecka. However, Flores will continue to see patients for the time being.
“His office is still open and keeping regular hours,” Kletecka said. “He still has some time left on his employment agreement.”
His office is expected to end services Monday.
Kletecka also confirmed that, while another physician employed as a hospitalist at Southwest Medical Center will no longer walk the halls, that job is not vacant.
Dr. Vicente Florida’s contract with the hospital expired recently, and the SWMC board “chose not to renew it,” said the SWMC publicist.
Dr. Derrick Mena, already serving as a hospitalist, will continue to treat patients admitted to SWMC.
As a hospitalist, Florida did not operate a private practice or clinic. Forida had an annual salary of $274,997.
“He only saw patients who were hospitalized,” Kletecka said, noting that the situation should not affect Liberal’s need for primary care doctors.
Physicians who serve as hospitalists fill the gap that sometimes occurs when a patient is taken to the emergency room and admitted to the hospital before the primary care doctor can address the situation. Hospitalists do not replace a patient’s regular physician; rather, they consult with the primary doctor and sometimes perform rounds for patients during office hours, when primary care doctors cannot.
EDITOR’S NOTE — Leader & Times staff contributed to this story.