WELLMONT HANCOCK COUNTY HOSPITAL GRANTED CERTIFICATE OF NEED

A certificate of need that will allow Wellmont Health System to build a 10-bed hospital in Hancock County last week received unanimous approval from the state Health Services and Development Agency.

“It’s part of our mission to improve the quality of life of the people in our region,” said Greg Neal, president of Hawkins County Memorial Hospital and a key figure in the creation of the new hospital. “It’s hard to enjoy any aspect of your life if you’re worried that you or a member of your family doesn’t have timely access to medical care in an emergency.

“There is no doubt this hospital will bring improved health and piece of mind to the people of Sneedville and Hancock County.”

Wellmont has partnered with Hancock County to build and operate the $5 million facility. After a lease agreement is finalized, it will be presented to the Wellmont board of directors and the Hancock County Commission for final approval. The county will then move forward with a bond issue, while Wellmont will finalize the hospital’s architectural design.

Construction is scheduled to begin in the fall.

Because the hospital will provide care in an area identified by the federal government as medically underserved, the facility will be designated a critical access hospital. The hospital will provide inpatient and outpatient services, including emergency services, ambulatory procedures, radiology, laboratory, respiratory therapy and physical therapy.

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