SCOTT COUNTY, Tenn. (WVLT) - After more than a year, good news for people in Scott County.
The hospital is reopening.
Blue tarp is wrapped around the signs of Pioneer Community Hospital.
Soon, those tarps will we taken off and the doors will be open again.
For a year and a half the people of Scott County have struggled to reach E.R. services close to home.
"Right now you have to go so far for emergency health care or for anything like that, it's ridiculous to have to go to LaFollette or somewhere like that," says Brian Jones who lives near the hospital.
Gretta Ellis also lives nearby, she has two children and had driven more than an hour to Knoxville to get them the care they need.
"Especially late at night, it's a long drive to try and go over there," she says.
So county officials decided that's enough, something has to be done.
Tuesday, the Health Services and Development agency granted Pioneer Health with an emergency certificate of need.
It allows them to open their doors for emergencies, even though obstetric services will not immediately be available.
"I think they'll get it eventually and that will be a good thing but, at least they'll be here for emergency care and people that are just sick," says Jones.
The hospital says it decided to go without the OB services to speed up the opening process.
It will open on December second as long as everything goes according to plan with the licensing.
Scott County Mayor Jeff Tibbals just confirmed to us that the county's only hospital will reopen December 2.
The hospital has been closed since May 2012.
The state is allowing the hospital to reopen without having an Obstetrician.
Mayor Tibbals met with state officials Tuesday and says a hospital opening without OB services is not uncommon.
Another hearing must be held to determine if the hospital can permanently remain open without OB services.
That hearing is scheduled for December 18.
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