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TriStar Summit hopes to construct ER in MJ

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TriStar Summit Medical Center hopes to invest $11 million in Mt. Juliet to build a satellite emergency room.

TriStar Summit has plans to further expand their services in the city, and the Mt. Juliet City Commission pledged their support with approval of their request for a Certificate of Need (CON) application Monday night.

In an excusive interview with TriStar Summit CEO Jeff Whitehorn and Associate Administrator Will Holets, Whitehorn said they want to build a freestanding Emergency Room off Interstate 40 and Beckwith Road.

"It will be an $11 million investment in the Mt. Juliet community," Whitehorn said.

With support from the city commission, TriStar Summit will file a CON application with the Tennessee Health Services and Development Agency.

"Our application will be reviewed by the board in November," Whitehorn said. "We look forward to present our case and help the citizens of Mt. Juliet and give back to the community."

Holets explained plans are for 24/7 emergency care at a one-story, 8,900-square-foot facility that will have eight emergency treatment rooms and a pediatric friendly environment.

Whitehorn said opening an ER in Mt. Juliet was an easy decision.

"The vast majority of Mt. Juliet's citizens choose TriStar Summit in an emergency," he said. "It just makes sense to open one in Mt. Juliet. We know where folks go for their health care needs."

He said research shows about 9,000 West Wilson and Mt. Juliet citizens used TriStar Summit's emergency room last year. He cited shorter drive and wait times.

Whitehorn said the ER will be very similar to the one at TriStar Summit, with physicians, nurses, staff and state-of-the-art equipment such as CT scanners and ultrasound equipment.

"About 35-plus new jobs will be created," Whitehorn said. "People who live in Mt. Juliet will love to be able to work in their city, and we will fill their jobs at TriStar Summit."

They noted Mt. Juliet is one of the fastest growing cities in Middle Tennessee. In 2009 they made a commitment to the city to eventually build an ER, and now they are fulfilling that commitment, according to Whitehorn.

Already, in 2010 TriStar Summit opened Summit Walk-in Clinic in the Providence shopping area near Publix. It's now named CareSpot TriStar Health. In 2014, they opened TriStar Summit Medical Plaza in South Mt. Juliet.

"This ER is a really big deal," Whitehorn said. "It's unlike anything we've seen in the area. We just really want to serve the Mt. Juliet community. It will be state-of-the-art."

If things track as they should, they hope to open the ER the first quarter of 2017.

Writer Laurie Everett can be reached at

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