On Thursday, officials of the Cedar County Health Department met at the Medical Mall to work on a plan for the revamped Health Department.

The revamp is necessary because Cedar County Memorial Hospital, which has run the Health Department for about 25 years gave notice that because of the health mandates just issued that it can no longer run the Cedar County Health Department after Friday, Dec. 3, due to the toll the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services vaccine mandate ha taken on Cedar County Memorial Hospital staffing.

Cedar County Northern Commissioner Don Boultinghouse said he believes that in Missouri there are only two health departments serviced by hospitals and Cedar County is one of them.

About 25 years ago, Jackie Boyles, who was the hospital CEO at the time, lobbied the Cedar County Commission for permission to take control of the Health Department which at the time was run by other counties.

The Cedar County Commission voted on Wednesday, Nov. 17, to provide notice to the county of the hospital’s inability to run the Cedar County Health Department after Friday, Dec. 3.

Presiding Commissioner Marlon Collins noted that that the Cedar County doesn’t have a property or sales tax to support the county health department.

The meeting Thursday was a conference call which no media was permitted to be on because personnel was discussed.

Jenean Ehlers, who has announced her retirement, has volunteered to continue to head the department until the situation is resolved, Boultinghouse said.

Collins said the hospital will “unhook” from the health department on Feb. 17.

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