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Nash sells Home Health agency

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BY LINDELL JOHN KAY
Staff Writer

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

NASHVILLE — The Nash County Board of Commissioners voted Monday to sell the county's Home Health Agency for $2 million.

The agency was sold to HealthView Capital Partners with $250,000 set aside in escrow for the first year to protect the buyer from liability. In the second year, the escrow amount will drop to $125,000.

HealthView, as detailed in the assets purchase agreement, will take on all the agency's current patients.

It was critical for the county and HealthView to ensure a smooth transition for patients, said Erin Roberts, a partner in Nelson Mullins Riley & Scarborough, which helped facilitate the deal.

Created in 1975, Home Health is a nonprofit organization that provides medical care to at-home patients so they can feel more comfortable and secure. The agency employs registered nurses; physical, speech and occupational therapists; medical social workers; and home health aides who visit patients at home as needed.

The board reviewed the agency's fiscal and operational position earlier this year and determined it would be beneficial to convey the agency to another operator.

County board Chairman Robbie Davis said he knew a lot of work on both sides went into the sale.

"I'm glad to see both sides together," Davis said.

Nash County Health Director Bill Hill said all eight of the agency's remaining employees would be offered positions with the new company. The board discussed that matter further during closed session.

Hill said public home health agencies have been on the decline nationwide with private agencies closing the gap.

Commissioner Fred Belfield, who voted against the sale, said he remains skeptical about turning over the agency to private hands.

Belfield said he'd hate to see home health care end up in the same situation as mental health. Private enterprises exist to make a profit, and when that doesn't happen cuts are made, he said. Government needs to be involved so it doesn't fail.

Davis said when the private sector is willing and able, government needs to step aside.

Roberts said HealthView agreed in the assets purchase agreement to take on indigent patients.

The board voted 6-1 to sell the agency.

This article has been updated to correct the name of the agency being sold.

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