Big South Fork Medical Center will officially open its doors on Tuesday, Aug. 8, at 8 a.m.
Tony Taylor, CEO of the soon-to-open hospital, made the announcement Friday afternoon, following the completion of the hospital’s life safety survey and licensure survey this week.
“The inspectors saw no problem with either of those and so we’re ready to move forward,” Taylor said.
The hospital will open as a 25-bed facility, with about 80 full-time employees. Taylor said the emergency department will open with the hospital, and most services will be ready to go. The lone exception is the hospital’s surgical unit, which will open at a later date.
The emergency department is being staffed by Western Healthcare, and Taylor said several of the emergency room doctors will be familiar faces to past patients of the hospital. Stat Care is the hospitalist group that has contracted with the hospital, and Dr. Josh Thompson — an Oneida native who has served as hospitalist in the past — will return to that role when the hospital reopens.
Big South Fork Medical Center is owned by Florida-based Rennova Health Inc., and is the flagship facility for that company’s newly-formed hospital division. Rennova successfully negotiated a deal to acquire ownership of the hospital from Mississippi-based Pioneer Health Services last year. Pioneer had acquired the hospital from Scott County, but filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the spring of 2016. The company eventually announced that it was closing its Oneida facility, shortly before revelations that the federal Internal Revenue Service had placed a $500,000 tax lien on the facility.
Rennova’s ownership of the facility comes without the burden of that lien, however. One of the company’s first moves was to hire Taylor, who served as CEO of the hospital for the duration of Pioneer’s tenure there and is familiar with the facility.
Much of the rest of the administrative staff at the hospital will be unchanged, as well.
The reopening of the hospital comes exactly one year and one month after the hospital closed its doors. The opening of the facility has been long anticipated. Rennova originally expected to open the doors in the spring, but that date was pushed back to allow for renovations, licensing procedures and other preliminary measures.