Community Headlines

Posted on: September 15, 2017

Second 'Microhospital' Proposed Near Mount Carmel East in Whitehall


A second microhospital is proposed for Franklin County, a 15-bed facility in Whitehall on the site of a closed Applebee's, according to an item to be introduced Tuesday at City Council.

The location, 4600 E. Broad St., compounds the mystery of what health system would operate the 18,600-square-foot facility. Developer Embree Asset Group Inc. typically works with local or regional health systems to operate its microhospitals.

All four Columbus-based systems said they had no agreement with Embree.

Embree, based just outside Austin, Texas, also is seeking to build a 15-bed hospital in Dublin. In each building, eight of the rooms are designated for inpatient stays; the rest are for treatment and exams. The trend toward microhospitals is another way to get care for less-serious cases in more convenient settings, most often in more affluent suburbs.

OhioHealth Corp., Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center and Nationwide Children's Hospital said they aren't involved in the project. I even asked Central Ohio Primary Care Physicians Inc., the Westerville-based independent mega-practice – they said no.

Mount Carmel Health System also said it's not the partner. Among regional systems it has been most enthusiastic on joint ventures, one of which is a 10-bed hospital. But the Whitehall site is just 2.6 miles from Mount Carmel East.

"We are still evaluating our options for continuing our growth and expansion and will share with you our revised strategies and plans as soon as possible," said a statement from Mount Carmel.

Carrie Ghose covers entrepreneurship, venture capital, City Hall, technology, health care and the business of marijuana for Columbus Business First.