Struggling hospital in Fentress County to lose funding

JAMESTOWN, Tenn. (AP / WVLT) - A rural Tennessee hospital that's struggling to even keep its lights on is set to see its federal funding cut next month.

The Tennessean reports the Centers of Medicaid and Medicare Services announced Wednesday that Fentress County's only hospital will no longer receive Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements as of June 12. Jamestown Regional Medical Center's exclusion could be its death knell.

A federal investigation released Wednesday said the 85-bed facility owed more than $4 million to 200 vendors as of this month. It partially lost power last month when it didn't pay a $33,000 electric bill. Federal officials say the hospital kept portions of employee paychecks that were withheld for federal taxes.

The Department of Health and Human Services issued a notice for involuntary termination of Medicare / Medicaid Provider agreement.

The Medicare program will not make payment for hospital services to patients who are admitted on or after June 12, 2019. For patients admitted prior to June 12, 2019, payment may continue to be made for up to 30 days for services furnished on or after June 12, 2019.

According to the hospital website, Jamestown Regional Medical Center, formerly Fentress County General Hospital, admitted its first patient on March 1, 1960. Currently, Jamestown Regional Medical Center has 85 beds and is owned by Rennova Health.

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