Company closes Dr. Warfield's gastro office

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By Steve Doyle

Patients of Dr. Paul Warfield were surprised when they showed up for appointments recently and saw a sign on the door of his office on Mack Walters Road informing them that he was no longer practicing in Shelby County.

Officials at Jewish Hospital Shelbyville, where Warfield also saw patients, were caught off guard, too.

Warfield, a gastroenterology specialist, was employed by Commonwealth Specialists of Frankfort, and the company apparently decided to close the office.

Commonwealth is a subsidiary of Health Care Associates, a national holding company. The Web site for Commonwealth listed no reference to Dr. Warfield or his former office, and there was no contact information for company management.

“It caught us by surprise,” Jewish Hospital Shelbyville CEO Michael Collins said. “They came in on a Thursday evening told him they were closing the office immediately.”

Patients who showed up to see Warfield for their digestive disorders were referred to his office’s local telephone number for assistance, and the person answering the phone there said questions about Warfield and the office would have to be answered by the company’s marketing manager, Stacia Yount, but calls to Yount were not returned.

Collins said he could not speculate on HCA’s reasons for the change.

Warfield had practiced in Shelbyville for at least two years, and Collins said his work was good and that he was well-liked by the folks at his hospital.

“He was excellent and provided great care,” Collins said. “We’re disappointed. Everybody in our hospital thought he was very knowledgeable.”

Collins said that responsibility for the patients and their treatment lies with HCA but that some had called JHS to seek advice and treatment. “We are assisting them,” he said.

Because he had been released by HCA, Warfield can’t continue to see patients until he had malpractice insurance, contracts and office personnel in place.