NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee’s Unified Command Group finalized plans Thursday to establish an alternate care site at Metro Nashville General Hospital, 1818 Albion St., to increase hospital capacity in Middle Tennessee for the treatment of COVID-19 patients.
“We have put in place a critical resource to meet local, COVID-19 patient care needs if required,” said Commissioner Lisa Piercey, MD, MBA, FAAP, Tennessee Department of Health. “Our hope is we do not have to activate the Nashville alternate care site; however, Nashville General will keep the facility on standby until TDH and Metro Nashville officials determine the extra patient capacity is needed for the region.”
The Nashville General alternate care site is a unique “hospital within a hospital model,” designed to be able to activate and de-activate quickly if needed and to provide a more efficient approach to meet potential needs of the city. It occupies two hospital floors, totaling 26,292 square-feet, and provides an additional 67, individual bed spaces to treat COVID-19 patients if the region begins to exceed their existing hospital capacity.
The Nashville General site is equipped with supplies to care for low acuity COVID-19 patients. Should the site be needed, Nashville General Hospital will provide wrap around services including biomedical, nutrition, security, internet access, janitorial, linen, medical oxygen, office supplies, pharmacy, and radiology.
Under a Mission Assignment from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, USACE coordinated and managed upgrades to the Nashville General sited, and the Governor’s Unified Command Group has secured the lease agreement with Nashville General, as well as the wrap-around services for the ongoing maintenance and operation of the facility.
Nashville General will provide medical direction for the care of COVID-19 patients if the facility is occupied.
The award of a Major Disaster Declaration to Tennessee on April 2, 2020, made funding assistance available from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to the State for costs associated with implementing COVID-19 emergency protective measures, such as establishing alternate care sites to increase hospital bed capacity.
Gov. Lee established the UCG on March 23, 2020, to streamline the COVIG-19 emergency response coordination between the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency, the Tennessee Department of Health, and the Tennessee Department of Military.