Tennessee hospital loses staff, hasn't admitted patients since November

The Jellico (Tenn.) City Council voted Feb. 25 to send a contract termination notice to Rennova Health, the company that operates Jellico Medical Center, according to TV station WBIR

The hospital, owned by the city, has not admitted a patient since November and often doesn't have enough staff to provide adequate patient care, city attorney Elizabeth Burrell told TV station WATE. She said West Palm Beach, Fla.-based Rennova has breached its contract by not operating Jellico Medical Center as an acute care hospital, according to WBIR

Rennova CEO Seamus Lagan said the hospital needs significant investments for upgrades, and the city council is aware of deficiencies at the hospital. 

"They are aware of the deficiencies in their building and must realize that either they or someone else will have to make the required investment of probably $500,000 or more if the facility is to continue in use as a hospital," Mr. Lagan told WBIR. "We are not aware of anyone other than us committed to making this investment at present, so I fail to see how such a decision by the [city council] benefits the community or the current employees at any point in the future."

Mr. Lagan acknowledged that it has been months since Jellico Medical Center has admitted a patient. He told WBIR that hospital staff left for jobs at better paying facilities, which impacted the hospital's ability to accept inpatients. 

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