Providence to build ER in Fairfield

WINNSBORO – Fairfield County Council members signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) Monday evening with Providence Health and Fairfield Memorial Hospital that sets in motion the construction of a new state of the art, freestanding, 24-hour Emergency Services facility in the County. The facility will be owned and operated by Providence Health and will subsequently lead to the closing of the Emergency Room and inpatient bed services at Fairfield Memorial Hospital after the new ER is up and running, according to the MOU.

While it was not disclosed on Monday evening where the facility will be located, Council Chairman Billy Smith said it has been a primary concern of Council that the facility be centrally located within the County.

“We have been assured in executive session tonight that it will be,” Smith said. “We had hoped to be able to let everyone know with this announcement where it will be located, but I think we’ll be able to do that soon.”

“We look forward to working with Fairfield Memorial Hospital and Fairfield County to create a strong, viable model that preserves access to important healthcare services and meets the long-term needs of the community,” Providence Health Market CEO Scott Campbell said in a meeting with FMH board members prior to separate votes taken Monday evening on the MOU by that board and County Council.

Smith said the new facility is expected to take two to four months to design, then about a year to construct.

In addition to signing the MOU, Council also passed a Resolution stating that it would continue to financially support FMH’s operations for up to 18 months or until the new Providence emergency facility is open for business. That support will be in an amount not less than Council’s currently budgeted funding levels of $1.2 million per year

The Resolution also stated that the County will give Providence Hospital, LLC $1 million each year for 10 years.

“Despite the best efforts of FMH, its current model is not sustainable for the long term. Because of this, FMH, the County and Providence Health are partnering through this memorandum to ensure that our County’s residents continue to have access to critical 24-hour ER services. We feel the best interests of our citizens are best met by our entering into this agreement,” Smith said.


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