Ballad Health takes first steps to reopening rural Virginia hospital

Johnson City, Tenn.-based Ballad Health opened an urgent care center in Lee County, Va., as it gears up to fully reopen Lee County Hospital, reports The Roanoke Times.

The Pennington Gap, Va.-based hospital shuttered in 2013. The Lee County Hospital Authority voted in January to partner with Ballad Health to reopen the hospital. Ballad was created last year through the merger of Wellmont Health System and Mountain States Health Alliance. Wellmont was the last system to operate the hospital.

Ballad's new urgent care center opened Oct. 9 and is staffed by eight physicians, nurses and radiology techs, according to The Roanoke Times. It will offer some additional medical services in the area while Ballad begins the work to stand up operations again at Lee County Hospital.

Ballad Chief Administrative Officer Marvin Eichorn said the hospital is slated to reopen next fall, according to the report. Ballad is currently upgrading the building and beginning the Medicare and Medicaid approval process, according to the report.

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