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No word yet on hospital lawsuit

POSTED: April 2, 2008 5:01 a.m.

There was no word Friday afternoon on whether a lawsuit has been filed by Barrow Regional Medical Center in Winder to stop Northeast Georgia Health System’s planned Braselton hospital.

In April 2007, the Georgia Department of Community Health approved the certificate of need for the 100-bed hospital just off Ga. 211. Barrow Regional is located 13 miles from the planned site.

Barrow Regional appealed the decision in December, but the decision was upheld Dec. 20 by a hearing officer and again on Feb. 22 by the department’s review board. The Winder hospital had 30 days from that time to file a lawsuit, or end its appeal.

Melissa Tymchuk, a spokeswoman for Northeast Georgia Health System, said there had been no notification if a lawsuit had been filed. She added that since the 30-day window ends on a weekend, Barrow Regional may have until Monday to file. Phone calls and e-mails to Barrow Regional representatives were not returned. A spokeswoman for the Winder hospital declined to comment on the issue earlier this week.

Construction on the facility has been stalled pending the outcome of the appeals, but work has begun on Medical Plaza I, which is scheduled to open this fall and house 40 to 50 doctors. The hospital would not open until 2011-12 when the realignment of Thompson Mill Road is scheduled to be completed.



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