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Cookeville Regional Gets $9.4 Million Grant

/ The Upper Cumberland's News Leader
Cookeville Regional Gets $9.4 Million Grant

Cookeville Regional Medical Center presented a $9.4 million Health Resiliency Grant from the Tennessee Department of Health to help fund its 4 West and 5 West renovation project.

Tennessee Department of Health Commissioner Ralph Alvarado said this is one of the larger investments the department has made this year. He said he has been focused on supporting hospitals in facility improvements since the pandemic highlighted that need.

“People were beaten down, I think, after that,” Alvarado said. “They were just tired of it. They don’t want to hear about it anymore. Within our own department, I think a lot of folks just wanted to move on to other things. It also exposed a lot of weaknesses within our own system, whether it be our public health system or our healthcare system, and the importance that when there is a crisis, you need to have adequate infrastructure to be able to handle those things.”

Cookeville Regional Medical Center CEO Buffy Key said “resiliency” is the perfect word to describe the hospital as it has navigated the challenges presented over the last five years.

“We’re so thrilled to take care of our people,” Key said. “Our core competency here at Cookeville Regional is ‘Our people taking care of our people.’ The funds that this state grant has provided will help us do that, expand that access.”

Alvarado said the department has issued some $240 million in grants for brick-and-mortar improvements and practice transformation through the Health Resiliency Grant Program. Key said the renovation, slated for fall completion, will add forty beds and six dialysis bays.

Key said she and the rest of the CRMC staff are proud to be the only hospital in the community and continue to provide the services that Upper Cumberland residents depend on. Alvarado said that given the great demand, the department has added another $50 million to next year’s budget for assisting in projects like this one.

“I came from another state where a lot of the focus on using funds that the federal government had allocated to be able to use for lots of different things were not necessarily dedicated toward infrastructure when it came to the healthcare system,” Alvarado said. “And here, I think that the wisdom of the governor and the general assembly, they decided to give some of those funds to the Department of Health and say, ‘hey, put this to good use.”


The post Cookeville Regional Gets $9.4 Million Grant appeared first on News Talk 94.1/AM 1600.