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Six of Roane County’s eight ambulances were parked on Harriman’s Devonia Street Sunday morning — but not because of any emergency.
The gathering was due to the closing of the old Roane Medical Center in downtown Harriman and the transfer of patients to the new facility in Midtown.
“We’ve been planning this for over a month,” Roane County ambulance director Howie Rose said about the patient transfer. “We’ve had weekly meetings with the hospital to get ready for this.”
Officials said the operation, which started around 8 a.m., worked well.
“We moved 19 patients in two-and-a-half hours,” Rose said. “Once we got started, everything went really smooth.”
“We’re very thankful there’s no snow,” said Jodi Harris, marketing and public relations coordinator for Covenant Health Inc., the corporate owner of Roane Medical Center.
The address to the new facility is 8045 Roane Medical Center Drive.
The new phone number is 316-1000.
Roane County Executive Ron Woody, who was in attendance for Sunday’s opening, said the new hospital is a big deal for the area.
“It’s going to be a good impact for the community,” he said. “It’s good for retirement industry. You’re going to see other businesses develop in the vicinity of the hospital, so it’s just a win-win for all of us.”
Harris said the new hospital has 54 patient beds, compared to 105 at the old one.
“Most of the procedures are outpatient-based, so at this point we don’t really need as many beds,” she said. “However, we do have the ability to expand if we need to.”