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170-bed Alabama hospital joins Huntsville Hospital System

Highlands Medical Center, a 170-bed hospital in Scottsboro, Ala., will join Huntsville (Ala.) Hospital Health System on Oct. 1, according to local news station WHNT.

The medical center will become the 10th facility in the Huntsville Hospital Health System. 

Jackson County Health Care Authority, which oversees Highlands Medical Center and two rehabilitation facilities, inked a letter of intent to join the larger health network in July.

At the time it signed a letter of intent, Jackson County Health Care Authority said the Scottsboro facility is the only remaining independent hospital left in North Alabama, and joining a system will help it fund capital improvements and realize cost savings through buying power, according to Jackson County Health Care Authority.

"The increasingly complex and uncertain healthcare environment makes it more and more challenging for community owned non-profit hospitals like Highlands to flourish and grow," said Bob Matthews, chair of the Jackson County Health Care Authority board.

JCHCA will continue to exist as an advisory board. 

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