When you think about small Texas towns, a few things that might typically come to mind are sports, farming, or even some mom-and-pop restaurants. Hospitals? Probably not as much. However, for Crosbyton, it just so happens to be one of the many treasures the small town has to offer.
The Crosbyton Clinic Hospital has been serving its community and those around it since it first opened its doors in 1945. The two “nearest” hospitals outside of Crosbyton are in Lubbock (40 miles away), and in Seymour (120 miles away), making it the perfect location for those who live in rural communities to turn to in case of an emergency/illness.
“Things would be very different if we did not have the hospital here,” said Dr. Steve Alley, MD, the Chief of Staff at the hospital. “The clinic is able to serve the entire surrounding area. We have a lab X-Ray right here. We’re able to maintain the emergency room for people who need to be hospitalized short-term.”
“That is the name of the game here.”
Dr. Alley says he has even had gotten to experience first-hand what it was like to be a patient at his hospital. He mentions that although he may be biased, he was pleased with his stay and the hospitality.
“It would’ve made a big difference last spring in my little break,” said Dr. Alley, motioning to his wrist which was still in a temporary brace. “It was a bicycle-truck accident. I was on the bicycle, had some injuries, but our EMS was out there in five minutes. If the community didn’t have a hospital or the EMS, it would’ve been a little more difficult, a different outcome.”
“It’s more fun to be the doctor,” he adds.
A fun fact about the hospital: it made its international debut a few years back when it was featured on a BBC reality TV series, “For One Night Only.” The contestants were put to the challenge of being true “cowboys” and were flown to West Texas.
When one contestant was injured after horseback riding in one of nearby canyons, the closest place to treat his injuries was none other than the Crosbyton Clinic Hospital! With the hospital’s and Dr. Alley’s permission, the camera crew was able to go inside with the admitted patient and film him being treated.
But when it’s not in the limelight, the hospital quietly and humbly takes pride in its goal in continuously serving its community. For Mason Lipham, a radiology technician at the hospital, the friendly environment has made all the difference in his work experience.
“It’s more of a small-town feel, so I really enjoy that,” said Lipham, who just began working at the hospital after transferring over from UMC. “It’s kind of like a family. You know everybody by their first name, you see the same people everyday, and it’s ‘good morning,’ ‘have a goodnight.’ It’s a closer feeling.”
And while doctors of course would prefer to see less patients being rushed through the hospital doors, they say they appreciate the small-town pace of things that help make getting to know their patients even easier.
“Oh, I think it’s very rewarding. This is what we were meant to do. This is home,” said Dr. Alley.
A special thanks to Debra Miller, the Hospital Administrator, who helped KLBK coordinate interviews and filming at the hospital.