LOUISVILLE, Ky. and FORT SMITH, Ark. – Rehabilitation services in the Fort Smith region are about to get a major upgrade.
Kindred Healthcare, LLC and Mercy today announced that they have signed a definitive agreement and created a joint venture to construct and operate a 40-bed inpatient rehabilitation hospital in Fort Smith.
Groundbreaking is expected in the fall, subject to regulatory and other approvals, with construction expected to take 12 to 13 months. A location is being determined for the facility projected to be 49,000 square feet and cost $23 million.
Kindred will manage day-to-day operations of Mercy Rehabilitation Hospital Fort Smith. The new hospital will care for adults recovering from conditions such as stroke, neurological disease, injury to the brain or spinal cord and other debilitating illnesses or injuries.
“We look forward to expanding our existing partnership with Mercy to build and operate this facility, our first freestanding inpatient rehabilitation hospital in Arkansas, to address the growing need for inpatient rehabilitation services in the state,” said Jason Zachariah, president of Kindred Rehabilitation Services, a division of Kindred Healthcare. “We are proud to create another quality-focused partnership with Mercy Fort Smith and expect this collaborative effort, like other Kindred partnerships across the country, to deliver the kind of excellent patient care that helps our inpatient rehabilitation business outperform peers in key clinical measures.”
Currently, Mercy operates an inpatient rehab facility within Mercy Hospital Fort Smith. Mercy also offers a full complement of outpatient rehab services.
“Our Inpatient Rehab has excelled in providing quality rehabilitative services to our patients and will now be able to continue this exceptional care in a new, high-tech hospital,” said Ryan Gehrig, president of Mercy Hospital Fort Smith. “With the arrival of two new neurosurgeons in Drs. Ken and Kate Foxx in August, coupled with the continued exceptional care provided by Dr. Arthur Johnson, Mercy Fort Smith will be positioned to provide a seamless continuum of care for all rehab patients.”
“The staff of Mercy Rehab and I look forward to the opening of our new rehabilitation hospital, which will be larger, modern and fully equipped,” said Dr. Michael Chen, medical director of Mercy Rehab. “We will use it to better serve our community with the compassionate care and attention to service that Mercy is known for.”