HOSPITAL CLOSES DOORS

By Jacob E. Rosenbaum

After being in operation for nearly 60 years, Jamestown Regional Medical Center, formerly known as Fentress County General Hospital, has closed its doors following months of financial turmoil.

Sudden but not unexpected, the closure, which occurred at 7 p.m. on Thursday, June 13, has left Fentress County in a difficult position, as there is now no operative medical center within nearly fifty miles of Jamestown.

A statement regarding the hospital’s closure was issued by JRMC CEO Michael Alexander last Thursday, June 13, which reads thusly:

“Please be aware that effective at 7:00 pm on June 13, 2019, due to the loss of participation in the Medicare and Medicaid programs and related supply issues, Jamestown Regionakl Medical Center will be temporary closing, We expect to resolve the related issues and to resume operations in the near future. We will release an announcement of the date that we plan to resume services.

Sincerely,

Michael Alexander, FACHE, Chief Executive Officer”

Alexander had been in his position just three days at the time of the announcement.

Although the statement mentions the loss of Medicare and Medicaid payments, and the hospitals lack of supplies, it has been reported that there was also an issue with the hospital’s liability insurance for its employees which weighed heavily in the final decision to close.

“There was a lapse of payment of the liability insurance for the employees,” said Fentress County Executive Jimmy Johnson. “Several of the employees were worried that they shouldn’t be working under those conditions, and the administration agreed, which, in combination with the other factors of not having supplies and losing the Medicare agreements, led to the closure.”

There has been a steady flow of troubling information concerning JRMC since the spring of this year, when reports first arose of hospital employees’ paychecks bouncing.

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