Wednesday, Jun 26, 2024

Ballad Health Announces Expansion of Franklin Woods Community Hospital

Franklin Woods Community Hospital

Investment to expand inpatient capacity, reduce emergency room wait times & enhance healthcare access

As part of $160 million in capital investments in a wide range of service expansions and new technology, the Ballad Health Board of Directors has approved an inpatient expansion of Franklin Woods Community Hospital, adding 20 beds to the hospital’s capacity.

The additional beds will create needed capacity for the Johnson City hospital, where demand for services has increased to near capacity. This expansion will help alleviate wait times for patients and enable physicians to serve their patients when the services are needed.

“The medical staff applauds this investment by Ballad Health into the expansion of access to inpatient hospital care, which our patients will certainly benefit from,” said Dr. Grover May, the elected chief of the medical staff at Franklin Woods. “This expansion will reduce the need to hold patients in the emergency department, and it will reduce wait times for patients who want to use the great services at Franklin Woods. We are proud of the quality of care physicians and team members provide at Franklin Woods, and this expanded capacity will certainly enhance that experience.”

This investment is part of record capital investment in Ballad Health’s hospitals, which in the current year, exceeds more than $160 million. Capital investments into expanded access, the latest technology and new services include:

“The further impact of this expansion will be immeasurable,” said Stephanie Cook, registered nurse and chief nursing officer for Franklin Woods. “Crowding in hospitals, especially in emergency departments as admitted patients wait for available rooms, is a problem facing nearly every hospital in the country and we’re all trying to find solutions that enable us to meet the needs of our communities.

“The new beds will make Franklin Woods better for our current patients and team members – and more attractive to people who want to join us in the future.”

“While these capital investments are important, they come in addition to the major investment we have made into our people,” said Ballad Health Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Alan Levine.

“We have invested a recurring $150 million into higher wages for our frontline nurses and caregivers, nearly doubling starting wages for nursing. We are well on our way to building 13 high-quality childcare centers throughout our service area to serve our team members and community, and there are now more than 3,000 children of Ballad Health team members enrolled in Balladeers – a program designed to bring team members together as we support their deep passion for the Ballad Health family.

”While national nursing turnover remains at high levels, the most recent reports show that Ballad Health’s nursing turnover has decreased to below 14%, well below the national median and the southeastern median. All of these investments are intended to support our physicians and team members so they can provide the best possible care for their patients.”

“On behalf of all the team members and patients at Franklin Woods Community Hospital, we thank the Ballad Health Board of Directors and system leadership who saw this need and invested in our success,” said Dr. Melanie Stanton, a registered nurse and CEO of Franklin Woods. “There is no doubt this will make our patient experience even better.”

The expansion project will commence immediately. Architects and project planners are initially meeting with hospital team members to ensure nursing and clinicians have input in the design and plans for the expansion. The new patient beds are expected to open in 2026.

Ballad Health will provide additional updates on the expansion as the project develops.