Clay County officials this week suggested Florida based Braden Health as a possible suitor for Cumberland River Hospital.
The Decatur County General Hospital in Parsons, Tennessee recently purchased by Braden Health. Decatur County Mayor Mike Creasy said the organization has been professional in all aspects since taking over in July.
“The Commission, the community was all looking frustrated,” Creasy said. “Wanted the hospital but didn’t know what route to take. Braden came in met with all the commissioners one on one being very open on what his plans were.”
Creasy said the two struck a deal and now the company is rehabbing the facility to open an emergency room with six beds and a clinic. Creasy said the transition has not only been a relief to county officials, but also the community.
“It was a very very tough situation,” Creasy said. “Even though the commissioners voted to close it, everything fell back in the mayor’s lap. I was doing the best I could to move forward, and that’s when Braden came in and met with everybody. We were losing so much money so fast that we needed closing. It needed to stop. It needed to lay low for a minute and get everybody to see what deal could be worked out. After we signed this, it was a great relief for a lot of folks in this county and the commission itself that had to make that final decision to close the hospital.”
Creasy said the county owned the hospital and voted to close the facility in April 2020 due to significant money loss and lack of patients. Creasy said after multiple failed deals for a purchase, officials of the neighboring city Lexington introduced Decatur to Braden Health.
“I think the deal that we agreed upon was the best the county was going to get, still lay a frame work where Braden could be successful,” Creasy said. “It’s an industry and just like most industries, if I can bring in a new company here into this county with 30, 35, 40 employees making the kind of money nurses and doctors make, everybody would be so excited, and this is no different. There’s a guarantee they will bring 30 employees back to this county, so that means a lot to this community. That means a lot to me.”
Clay County Executive Dale Reagan said in a Monday Planning Committee that he recommended Hospital Owner Johnny Presley and Celina Mayor Luke Collins to communicate with Braden Health as work continues to reopen the facility.