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Plans to reopen Scott Co. hospital still unknown

12:09 AM, Feb 1, 2013   |    comments
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Scott County's hospital has been closed since May 2012.

Plans to reopen Scott County's hospital are still up in the air.

Thursday was the deadline for Scott County to reach an agreement with its potential hospital provider, S.M. Promen.

According to Scott County Attorney John Beaty, the county is waiting for S.M. Promen to submit proof it has capital to run the hospital.

In the past, S.M. Promen President Irving Sawyers has mentioned he needs $3 million to run the hospital.

Sawyers said on Thursday that his attorney had not submitted the proof to the Tennessee Attorney General's office yet.

If an agreement is not reached by the deadline, Jan. 31, one or both parties can agree to withdraw from the purchase agreement.

Since there is no hospital right now in Scott County, ambulances end up driving mostly to hospitals in Campbell and Knox County.
EMS Director Jim Reed said ambulances will continue with the longer commutes until a deal is reached.

"It's not like we're in a position where we have an option. We have to provide emergency services and that's what we're going to do to the best of our ability," Reed said.

According to Reed, ambulances went from driving 11-18 miles to 100 miles round trip.

Meanwhile, David Davidson of Oneida said he is hopeful a deal will be reached before his second child is born in August.

"I'm hoping they can reach a deal soon because it's putting a lot of stress on people who have to go all the way to Knoxville. A couple months ago our son had an accident and we had to take him all the way to Knoxville, instead of bringing him just right up here," Davidson said.

A special meeting will be held on Monday at 5 p.m. to decide how the county would like to proceed.

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