Tennessee hospital 6 weeks behind on paychecks, employees say

Employees at Big South Fork Medical Center in Oneida, Tenn., say they haven't been paid in about six weeks, according to The Independent Herald.

The hospital, owned by the embattled West Palm Beach, Fla.-based Rennova Health, is three pay periods behind on payroll as of March 19.  

In recent weeks, several staff members have resigned from their positions while others opted to skip their work shifts, according to the report.

Hospital administrators also reportedly held a staff meeting with employees last week asking them to be patient over the delayed paychecks. 

"If I didn't feel so obligated to this community I would have left already," an employee told the Independent Herald, speaking on condition of anonymity. "It's becoming apparent that they're just going to continue stringing us along."

Scott County Mayor Jeff Tibbals told local news station WBIR that federal stimulus funds kept Big South Fork Medical Center afloat through the winter, but its application for a second round of funding was recently denied.

Delayed paychecks have been a problem for Big South Fork Medical Center in the past, and the hospital has also dealt with shortages of basic equipment and supplies, according to WBIR.

Rennova Health has closed its other two hospitals in Tennessee. Most recently, Jellico (Tenn.) Medical Center closed March 1, days after the city council voted to send a contract termination notice to Rennova. 

Rennova didn't respond to Becker's request for comment. 

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