Columbia County, GA – The battle over a hospital in Columbia County may not yet be over.
A state judge denied an appeal from Doctors Hospital last week, essentially ruling that Georgia Regents Health System can continue with plan to build.
Officials with Georgia Regents say they were chosen to build the hospital because of their teaching mission, but Doctors Hospital officials say it’s simply a case of the state choosing a state entity for the hospital.
Columbia County Commission chairman Ron Cross says, while the two hospitals battle it out in court, the county is losing. “We want a hospital. We think we need one for the citizens and we need one because of our growth.”
Doctors Hospital has 30 days to appeal the most recent decision and a spokesperson says the hospital plans to do so.
There is no word on when Georgia Regents will start building the medical center.
Read the statement we received by Columbia County spokesperson Calie Cook Monday below:
Columbia County wishes to inform you on the latest development regarding the project to bring a 100-bed hospital to our community. On Sunday, September 27, we received news that the Georgia Department of Community Health affirmed its previous decision to grant Georgia Regents Medical Center a ‘Certificate of Need’ to establish a hospital in Columbia County.
This news comes after both University and Doctors hospitals filed appeals with the Department of Community Health to contest their resolution to issue GRU a Certificate of Need back in November 2014. If there is no further opposition, we hope to finalize the plans to push this project forward. As we are currently one of the fastest growing counties in Georgia, we are thrilled to be able to provide our community with this much needed asset and look forward to the economic and wellness benefits that this hospital will bring to the citizens of Columbia County.