Fugate toured the newly opened Winston County temporary hospital this afternoon (Monday) with local officials and hospital staff.
The temporary facility located on South Church in Louisville opened at 7:00 am on Monday after three weeks of preparation following the April 28 tornado that damaged the existing Winston Medical Center. The temporary mobile facility was brought in from a location in North Carolina to serve the Winston County community until the Winston Medical Center can be repaired or rebuilt.
Bryant and Fugate toured the emergency facilities, patients’ area, lab and x ray departments as well as the four concrete storm shelters located on site. The hospital will provide 10 patient beds and 5 emergency room beds.
In the following press conference, Governor Bryant noted the difficulty in preparing the site in such a short time frame and thanked those responsible noting that 7-8 feet of debris had to be removed before the hospital facility could be moved to the location.
Bryant said, “This advanced technology is operating and was ready for business at 7 am this morning and stands ready for the present needs of this community. If you need care – come here to this facility.”
FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate added that the scars from this storm are not going away anytime soon and noted that after the initial impact of the storm, much of the national press left.
“FEMA didn’t leave, SBA didn’t leave – we are going to be here to work with the Governor and your local officials. This is a team effort and we are here for the long haul and won’t leave until the job is done.”
Mayor Will Hill, MEMA representative Bill Brown and Dr. Mary Currier with the State Health Office spoke to the crowd as well.
Governor Bryant concluded the press conference with the following statement, ” The opening of this hospital is a signpost on our journey; debris removal and restoring employment will go on until this community is restored to be safer and better than it was before the storm.”