PROVIDENCE – The nation’s largest owner of rehabilitation hospitals is coming to Rhode Island now that a legal dispute has ended over its application to open a hospital in Johnston.
Alabama-based Encompass Health Corp. says it plans to open a 50-bed inpatient rehabilitation hospital at 2109 Hartford Ave. in Johnston. Set to open in 2024, the facility will serve patients with debilitating illnesses and injuries, including strokes and other neurological disorders, brain injuries, spinal cord injuries, amputations and complex orthopedic conditions.
The announcement by Encompass comes after the dispute over its “certificate of need” ended recently.
The RI Department of Health said Wednesday that an Encompass subsidiary, Encompass Health Rehabilitation Hospital of Johnston LLC, had applied in June 2019 for a “certificate of need” to establish the rehabilitation hospital.
In August 2020, dr. Nicole Alexander-Scott, then the state’s health director, followed the recommendation of the Health Services Council and approved the application.
That decision was appealed by other providers of rehabilitation services in Rhode Island – an appeal that was denied by the Health Department. Recently, the RI Supreme Court declined to hear the appeal, according to Health Department spokesperson Joseph Wendelken.
“We are excited to expand our rehabilitation services in the Northeast through this project, which will serve as Encompass Health’s first hospital in the state of Rhode Island,” Pat Tuer, president of Encompass Health’s Northeast region, said in a recent news release. “We look forward to improving access to high-quality, individualized rehabilitative care and allowing more residents to receive specialized care close to home.”
The hospital will offer physical, occupational and speech therapies to restore functional ability and quality of life in addition to 24-hour nursing care.
The facility will also feature all private patient rooms, a spacious therapy gym with advanced rehabilitation technologies, a daily living suite, cafeteria, pharmacy and therapy courtyard.
Encompass Health’s national footprint includes 153 hospitals in 36 states and Puerto Rico.
Story updated with information from the RI Department of Health on Encompass Health’s application to open a hospital in Rhode Island.
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