NEA Clinic Doctors Join with Baptist Memorial

The quality of health care in northeast Arkansas is about to get a big time boost. Jonesboro's NEA Clinic doctors are partnering with Baptist Memorial Health Care out of Memphis in their continued efforts to improve Jonesboro's Nea Medical Center. It's a corporate marriage, some might say, was made in heaven.

"It's answered prayer as far as we're concerned, it really is," said Bob Harrison.  Harrison should know, the Jonesboro real estate developer and broker, has offered up that prayer for 35 years, the entire time he's been a board member for Baptist Memorial Health Care in Memphis. "Oh it's an unblievable partnership for Jonesboro," said Harrison. "Baptist is a not for profit organization and the mission is of Christ's preaching, teaching, and healing and I'm just thrilled to pieces that it's come about."

This new owner partneship will join the NEA Clinic doctors with the resources and cash of  Baptist Memorial, a big time midsouth medical care operator.

"They provide expertise in hospital management, facilites and equipment," said Jim Boswell, NEA Clinic CEO. "They bring over $300,000,000 into the communities they are in, they have more than 14 hospitals and 12,000 employees.  We believe this brings long term stability and the highest level of patient care in our community."  Harrison added, "we're already a medical community and this is just going to make is more so. The main reason is because the financial support baptist can offer this area."

Among other possible expansion projects is the addition of as many as 50 beds to the already 104 all private room NEA Medical Center, a hospital that will have a new name.

"Our patients, employees and community won't notice any changes at all, what will change is the care and future growth of NEA Medical Center," said Boswell.

"They're just the tops in everything and it's right across the river and now this is going to be available in Jonesboro," added Harrison.

Right now Baptist Memorial is in negotiations to buy out current NEA Medical Center co owner, Community Health Systems. Boswell expects that process and all the paperwork to be done sometime in October.