Rehab hospital progress pending pair of court decisions
By NEAL WAGNER / City Editor
HealthSouth and Shelby Ridge are awaiting a pair of court decisions before moving forward with constructing proposed rehabilitation hospitals in Pelham and Alabaster.
The state’s Certificate of Need Review 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 late April, Montgomery Circuit Court Judge William Shashy ordered the CON board to instead award the 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.
If awarded the beds, Shelby Ridge plans to use them to fill a new 17-bed rehabilitation hospital on its property behind Shelby Baptist Medical Center, said Shelby Ridge Owner Chris Schmidt.
After Shashy’s ruling, HealthSouth filed a motion to appeal it.
“We filed our notice of appeal last week to overturn judge Shashy’s decision denying our application and granting Shelby Ridge’s application,” read a statement released by HealthSouth on July 29. “We have also requested an expedited review from the Court of Civil Appeals.”
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 CON’s board to transfer the former Carrarway beds to Shelby County currently is pending a decision by Montgomery County Circuit Court Judge Eugene Reese.
In mid-May, the Shelby County Commission filed a motion in support of the HealthSouth project, claiming it would allow Shelby County residents easier access to rehabilitation services, and claiming the HealthSouth project has “widespread and unanimous” support in the county.