Nashville's Mayor proposes turning the city's only safety net hospital into an ASC

The Mayor of Nashville, Tenn., submitted a proposal to close inpatient services for Nashville (Tenn.) General Hospital, the only safety net hospital in Nashville, and reopen the facility as an ASC, according to the Tennessean.

 

Here are five things to know:

1. Nashville Mayor Megan Barry submitted a request to the Metro Council to convert Nashville General Hospital into an ASC, according to the report. The hospital needs substantial funds to stabilize and then transition to an outpatient-only facility, which Mayor Barry requested from the council.

2. The city reportedly provided half a billion dollars to the hospital, starting in 2005 to sustain operations. After closing the inpatient program, Mayor Barry intends to open an "indigent care fund" to pay for hospitalizations among the low-income residents at privately funded hospitals.

3. The Metro Council, Nashville Hospital Authority and Nashville-based Meharry Medical College will need to approve the hospital's transition to an ASC. The vice chair of Metro Council's health and hospitals committee does not support the current plan.

4. Of the 120 beds at Nashville General Hospital, just 40 are used on an average day and 20 percent are part of an inmate care contract.

5. There isn't a timeline for the transition, but the hospital has struggled to pay the bills in recent years. Metro Council voted for a one-time $16 million payment to the Nashville Hospital Authority in April to keep the hospital running. The hospital receives a $35 million subsidy per year and last year required an additional $10 million in emergency funding.

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