Judge supports Shelby Ridge over HealthSouth project

A Montgomery judge recently issued an order penning support for a Shelby Ridge rehabilitation hospital over a proposed HealthSouth rehab hospital, pictured. (File)

A Montgomery judge recently issued an order penning support for a Shelby Ridge rehabilitation hospital over a proposed HealthSouth rehab hospital, pictured. (File)

By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor

A Montgomery Circuit Court judge penned support for 17 rehabilitation hospital beds being awarded to Alabaster’s Shelby Ridge and Rehab Select over HealthSouth in an order issued April 12.

Judge William Shashy issued the order in Montgomery Circuit Court ordering the state’s Certificate of Need Review Board to award 17 beds to Shelby Ridge instead of HealthSouth, which is looking to use the beds to fill half of a proposed 34-bed rehabilitation hospital in Pelham.

Shelby Ridge plans to use the beds to fill a new 17-bed rehabilitation hospital on its property behind Shelby Baptist Medical Center, said Shelby Ridge Owner Chris Schmidt.

The CON board agreed in July 2012 to create 17 new beds to be used by HealthSouth for its proposed rehabilitation hospital, but the decision was later appealed by several area nursing homes, including Columbiana Health and Rehabilitation and Shelby Ridge.

In January, the CON board voted to allow HealthSouth to move 17 beds from the now-closed Carraway Medical Center in Birmingham to Shelby County to be used in the proposed Pelham project.

“The addition of the rehabilitation hospital on the same campus of Shelby Ridge provides an opportunity for continuity of care for the patients needing multiple levels of treatment, and will greatly benefit the residents of Shelby County,” Schmidt wrote in the release.

In a statement issued April 29, HealthSouth officials said they were “disappointed” with Shashy’s order, and wrote the company plans to appeal the order.

“After working tirelessly for more than three years, we will continue to work to bring this new service to the residents of Shelby County that desperately need the services an inpatient rehabilitation hospital can provide,” Linda Wilder, president of HealthSouth’s Southeast region, wrote in the statement.

The CON Review Board still must make a final ruling on creating the 17 new beds. As of April 29, a Certificate of Need Review Board hearing on the matter had not yet been set.