MSHA, Signature Healthcare file intent for nursing home at old Northside Hospital site

Zach Vance • Sep 2, 2016 at 7:31 PM

The vacant Northside Hospital site at 401 Princeton Road could soon be home to a multi-million dollar nursing home and assisted living quarters.

That’s according to a notification of intent published Friday by affiliates of Mountain States Health Alliance and Signature Healthcare.

The partners plan to file for a certificate of need with the Tennessee Services and Development Agency on or before Wednesday.

“We totally understand the importance of better integration of the acute-care services and the post-acute care services. Partnering with somebody that operates solely on the post-acute care stage was the right for us to do in order to enhance the services that we already provide,” said Grace Pereira, Mountain States’ vice president of post-acute services.

The joint venture was made public in April 2014 when Mountain States officials signed a letter of intent with Signature Healthcare to begin demolishing the Northside Hospital building.

The second phase of the project involves building a single-floor, 107-bed assisted living community and skilled nursing facility. The new facility is expected to have 47 skilled nursing beds and 60 assisted living beds in all.

“It will all be on one level,” said Jennie Hornsby, special projects administrator for Signature Health.

“It will be a state-of-the-art building with a very upgraded therapy department. One of our big focuses is helping people with the rehab-to-home situations.”

Hornsby said the facility will house a coffee shop, a salon, a small library, a common social area and a fitness area.

“The drawing that I’ve seen, it’s a very beautiful building,” Hornsby said. “It will greatly enhance that area over there where the Northside Hospital once was.”

All of the assisted living rooms will be private with only one bed, Hornsby said. The price of rent has not yet been determined.

“Obviously, we’ll try to individualize as much as possible. (There will be) lots of windows so they can have light coming in and be able to see outside,” Hornsby said.

The nursing home and assisted living center’s day-to-day operations will be managed by Signature Healthcare staff, while Mountain States and Signature Health will each have members on a governing board. The building will be partially owned by both health care providers, 45 percent by Mountain States and 55 percent by Signature Health.

Pereira said the multi-use health care facility is scheduled to be completed in 20 months and will cost approximately $13 million. The letter of intent estimates the project will cost $8.57 million.

“We started discussing this project and kind of went through the planning stages about two or two and a half (years ago),” Pereira said.

“Once the CON goes through and we have the state’s approval, then the construction will start until the opening day.”

Once completed, the building will replace the 34-bed Princeton Transitional Care service inside Johnson City Medical Center and the inactive 13-bed Franklin Transitional Care facility at 400 North State of Franklin Road.

“We’re just excited about it. We think this is good for our community. It’s a great location with easy access to a lot of shopping, restaurants, etcetera, particularly for the assisted living side. We think it’s a good partnership for us and the community,” Pereira said.

If approved, the facility will also be certified for participation in Medicare.

Signature Healthcare currently operates Signature Healthcare of Greeneville, the Pine Ridge Care & Rehabilitation Center in Elizabethon, Mountain City Care & Rehabilitation Center and Signature Healthcare of Rogersville.

Email Zach Vance at [email protected] Follow Zach Vance on Twitter at @ZachVanceJCP. Like him on Facebook.com/ZachVanceJCP


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