Cumberland River Hospital Owner Johnny Presley claims that Clay County EMS crews intentionally diverted transports to other facilities outside of the county.
Presley said at least eight patients were denied transportation to the Cumberland River Hospital.
“Without the support of the local government and EMS, I am not going to continue to try and fund this hospital,” Presley said. I can not, even though the citizens have spoken very loudly they want their facility. I think the only move forward we have is litigation.”
Presley closed the hospital Friday citing financial issues and staff shortages.
Clay County Operational Medical Director Mark Pressley reviewed his involvement with the Cumberland River Hospital at Monday night’s Clay County Commission meeting Monday night. Pressley said he would review any ambulance call in question for any violation. Pressley said he received no communication from the hospital regarding EMS crews.
Pressley meet with CEO Roy Gilbert, Clay County EMS Director Natalie Boone and Presley on April 24th to review the hospital’s capabilities. At the time, Pressley said the hospital was very limited but was working hard to improve service.
“We covered a lot of ground that day,” Pressley said. “At the end of that meeting, I left business cards with Johnny Presley and Roy Gilbert. I told them as capabilities increase, let me know. I told them we could reassess what we could bring up there.”
Pressley said neither Gilbert or Johnny Presley contacted him after a generic call on June 4th.
Cumberland River Owner Johnny Presley said he has requested an investigation with the state EMS. Presley said local EMS crews failed to report patient transports and denied basic rights.
“When they bring a patient to our facility, by law, they are supposed to give us a report initially or in 24 hours,” Presley said. “None of this has ever been done in the two months leading up to this. That is a clear, blatant violation of every EMS personal. That has been reported, as well as, multiple patients reporting the fact they have been denied their Due rights to be transported to their local hospital.”
Presley said the hospital’s emergency room ran 24 hours a day with a trauma surgeon on staff.
The hospital can not support stroke and serious heart attack patients. Based on EMS response protocol, stroke patients would be brought to a stroke center or Cookeville Regional Center if flying was not available.