City Hospital to close by mid-September

Fayetteville City Hospital is located at 221 S. School Avenue across from the Fayetteville Public Library.

Photo: Todd Gill, Flyer staff

Washington Regional Medical Center officials announced this week they will close their City Hospital facility within 60 days.

The news came in a press release issued about a week after a 40/29 news report which stated that the Arkansas Department of Health and Human Services had found severe problems with the 100-year-old hospital-turned-nursing home.

Reported findings included roof leaks, stained floors and ceiling tiles, and disconnected toilet bowls filled with feces.

The facility, which was named the “Best Nursing Home in Northwest Arkansas” in a 2011 Arkansas Democrat-Gazette readers poll, is currently home to 72 residents.

Officials said residents will be moved to other long-term care facilities and nursing homes in the area, and that job placement assistance will be offered for the facility’s 99 employees, including “priority status” for transfers to other jobs within the system.

According to the release, the decision to close the facility was made by Washington Regional leadership based on “the timing of finalizing a long-term plan” for the building and “the age and accelerating deterioration” of it.

Bill Bradley, Washington Regional president and CEO, said the board is assessing the feasibility of building a replacement facility, but did not mention a possible location.

“As we begin to transition our residents and assist our staff, we are grateful that our region supports several new long-term and residential care facilities that we believe can help serve as a placement solution,” said Bradley.