For Release December 8, 2020

Contact: Casey Reese

615-571-2992 |

Knoxville Center for Behavioral Medicine Set to Break Ground

KNOXVILLE, TN (December 8, 2020) -Construction plans are set to begin in December, weather permitting, on the Knoxville Center for Behavioral Medicine. The 64-bed center is a result of a partnership among National HealthCare Corporation (NHC), Tennova Healthcare, The University of Tennessee Medical Center, and Reliant Healthcare Corporation.

“We are proud to partner with the region’s leading healthcare providers to serve a critical need for the community,” said Steve Flatt, chief executive officer of NHC. “This partnership exemplifies the power of healthcare organizations working together to improve the quality of life for our patients.”

The center will provide a comprehensive continuum of care for adults and geriatric patients with psychiatric, emotional, and addictive disorders. Partial hospitalization and intensive outpatient programs will be offered with individualized treatment plans based on clinical need.

The 55,000-square-foot facility will be located at the Tennova Health Park near the corner of Middlebrook Pike and Old Weisgarber Road on a 9-acre site. The center will provide more than 100 jobs for Knox County. It is projected to open in the second quarter of 2022.

“The Knoxville Center for Behavioral Medicine will provide compassionate, quality patient care through this collaborative partnership,” said Tony Benton, president and chief executive officer of Tennova Healthcare’s East Tennessee Market. “We are pleased to provide the same quality standards as found in each organization’s existing operations.”

“There is a critical need to provide high quality care to adults and seniors who may be experiencing psychological or emotional difficulties in our 16-county region,” said Joe Landsman, president and chief executive officer of The University of Tennessee Medical Center. “The collaborative effort between these reputable healthcare organizations will bring experienced care to the community and address the need and access issues we see on a regular basis.”

“Now more than ever, we need to provide accessible, high quality care for behavioral health patients,” said Jim Harper, president of Reliant Healthcare Corporation. “The Knoxville Center for Behavioral Medicine will offer help and hope to patients in a safe and supportive environment.”

To view a message from the center partners, click here.

For more information, visit

About National Healthcare Corporation

NHC affiliates operate for themselves and third parties 76 skilled nursing facilities with 9,633 beds. NHC affiliates also operate 24 assisted living communities, five independent living communities, one behavioral health hospital, and 35 homecare programs. NHC’s other services include Alzheimer’s and memory care units, hospice services, pharmacy services, a rehabilitation services company, and providing management and accounting services to third party post-acute operators. For more information, visit

About Tennova Healthcare

The Tennova Healthcare network of hospitals in East Tennessee includes Jefferson Memorial Hospital, LaFollette Medical Center, Newport Medical Center, North Knoxville Medical Center and Turkey Creek Medical Center with nearly 16,000 admissions, 410,000 outpatient visits and 125,000 emergency department visits each year. Learn more at 

About The University of Tennessee Medical Center

The mission of The University of Tennessee Medical Center, a Magnet® recognized hospital also certified by The Joint Commission as a Comprehensive Stroke Center and Comprehensive Cardiac Center, is to serve through healing, education and discovery. UT Medical Center is a 685-bed, not-for-profit academic medical center, with a regional network of primary care and specialty care physicians and practices as well as outpatient regional health centers and urgent care locations throughout its 21-county primary service area. The medical center, the region’s ACS-verified Level I Trauma Center and state designated regional perinatal referral center with a Level III private room NICU, is one of the largest employers in Knoxville. UT Medical Center features seven Centers of Excellence, including the Brain & Spine Institute, Cancer Institute, Emergency & Trauma Center, Heart Lung Vascular Institute, Advanced Orthopaedic Center, Primary Care Collaborative and Center for Women & Infants. Visit for more information about The University of Tennessee Medical Center.

About Reliant Healthcare Corporation

Reliant Healthcare (“RHC”) is a behavioral healthcare management firm. RHC has been in operation for 17 years partnering with strategically located hospitals and nursing home providers across the country to help design, build, and operate behavioral health hospitals. The mission of RHC is to develop and operate “state of the science” behavioral treatment facilities. RHC has developed inpatient facilities as small as 14 beds and as large as 114 beds. For more information, visit

This is in addition to the new 57-bed Knoxville Rehabilitation Hospital that will be built on the same property.

Author: WBIR Staff

Published: 5:27 PM EST February 26, 2020

Updated: 10:06 AM EST February 27, 2020

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Knoxville will soon be home to a brand new psychiatric hospital.

The new Knoxville Center for Behavioral Medicine will be a partnership between National HealthCare Corporation (“NHC”), Tennova Healthcare, The University of Tennessee Medical Center (“UTMC”) and Reliant Healthcare.

The state has granted the Certificate of Need for the 64-bed hospital, which will be located near the corner of Middlebrook Pike and Old Weisgarber Road.

“We are pleased to be working together with other reputable healthcare providers to offer compassionate, quality care to adults and seniors in our community who may be experiencing mental or emotional difficulties,” said Tony Benton, chief executive officer of Tennova Healthcare – East Tennessee Market. “We are excited to bring back a much-needed service that was long-established at Physicians Regional Medical Center in Knoxville until the hospital closure 14 months ago. Together, we are able to do what is best for this community.”

According to the release, the project will relocate 38 licensed inpatient beds from other Tennova hospitals and create 26 new beds dedicated to behavioral medicine services for the East Tennessee area. It will serve both adult and geriatric patients.

Construction on the 55,000 square-foot facility is projected to start in 2021 with an opening in 2022, subject to all necessary approvals. It's expected to bring 100 new jobs to Knoxville.

“We see a great need for additional behavioral medicine inpatient treatment services in East Tennessee on a regular basis here at The University of Tennessee Medical Center,” said Joe Landsman, President and CEO of The University of Tennessee Medical Center. “This collaborative effort between the medical center, Tennova Healthcare, National HealthCare Corporation, and Reliant Healthcare will bring experienced, high-quality care and will address the need and access issues for many in our 16-county region who are struggling with behavioral medicine related concerns.”

Additional news articles:

CON approved for psychiatric care facility in Maryland Heights

By Alisha Shurr


May 6, 2019

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — A soon-to-be new facility in St. Louis County is aiming to address an unmet need in the area: psychiatric beds for geriatric patients. On Monday, the proposed Maryland Heights Center for Cognitive Disorders received a certificate of need (CON) for the project.

“The proposed unit will focus on serving the needs of the geriatric population in St. Louis County and the surrounding area. The services offered by the unit will particularly serve the elderly in the community who require inpatient hospitalization due to mental disorders,” the application states.

The need-based formula used by the Missouri Health Facilities Review Committee shows a need for 328 psychiatric beds in the Maryland Heights Center service area. Representatives with the center contended the need is specifically greater for the geriatric population.

The Maryland Heights Center is expected to cost $5.7 million and be completed within the year. The committee unanimously approved of the project.

The 16-bed psychiatric hospital was just one of several agenda items at one of six yearly certificate of need meetings for the Missouri Health Facilities Review Committee

A new $5.1 million assisted living facility in Raytown, Missouri, was awarded a certificate of need. The Turnleaf Villas Senior Community is set to provide 10 private bedrooms for assisted living in a single facility, 18 private bedrooms for Alzheimer’s Memory Care in two facilities and 14 two-bedroom, two-bath, and single-car garage townhomes for senior independent living.

“Seniors will have access to various types of care and have the ability to live within the same community through their lives and remain comfortably with the people, [surroundings], and services they are familiar with,” the application states.

Turnleaf Villas did receive some pushback on their proposed 56-bed unit. Sen. Mike Cunningham raised questions on how it would affect a nearby facility which covers a large Medicaid population is currently struggling with staffing needs. He was the lone no vote on the proposal.

Belton Regional Medical Center and Saint Luke’s East Hospital both received unanimous approval to purchase a robotic surgery system.

The committee postponed making a decision on Sunshine Villa Homes application to purchase 4-ALF beds from Delta South. Both facilities are owned by the same individual.

The bed transfer was already postponed from an earlier expedited ballot and was postponed again, this time until the July 7 meeting. Unless the committee takes action, the request will automatically take effect on July 15.

Alisha Shurr

Alisha Shurr is a reporter for the Missouri Times and Missouri Times Magazine. She joined the Missouri Times in January 2018 after working as a copy editor for her hometown newspaper in Southern Oregon. Alisha is a graduate of Kansas State University. Contact Alisha at