The hospital in Patrick County. Photo courtesy of Addison Merryman.

Foresight Health Services, the new health care provider that took over the property of the former Pioneer Community Hospital in Patrick County, announced Monday that the company has formally launched its website and has begun accepting applications for the new critical access facility it plans to open by the end of a year. 

“At Foresight Health, we take a holistic view of what it means to be good neighbors, so we are thrilled not only by the opportunity to bring a high quality critical access facility and other healthcare services to Patrick County, but also start hiring locally and contribute to our local economy as well,” Sameer Suhail, CEO of Foresight Health, said in a news release. “There has been such a resoundingly positive public response since we’ve announced this project, and we cannot wait to get this project off the ground and start doing some real good in Southside and Southwest Virginia,” Suhail said.

The company said that it plans to create 200 to 300 new jobs with this initial project. Foresight Health is looking for “medical and other professionals, especially Southside and Southwest Virginia residents with rural healthcare experience, the statement said. Interested applicants can submit their resumes here.

According to its new website, Foresight Health brands itself as an “emerging leader in the healthcare industry, operating and managing inpatient facilities and outpatient service lines in Illinois and Virginia, with more areas to come both nationally and internationally.”

Once completed, the new critical access facility in Stuart will provide a valuable service to Patrick County residents who have been without local emergency medical care since September 2017, when Mississippi-based Pioneer Health Services closed its 25-bed hospital in Stuart, more than a year after filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. 

Foresight Health purchased the 10-acre property at 18688 Jeb Stuart Highway on April 7 from Virginia Community Capital, the hospital’s creditor, for $2.1 million. Suhail founded the company in February, after hearing about the vacant property. The entrepreneur has faced scrutiny back home in Chicago after he was connected to conduct that is in the focus of several state and federal legal probes. 

According to a report by the Chicago based nonprofit news platform Block Club and the Better Government Association from April of last year, Suhail owns at least four companies with ties to Chicago’s Loretto Hospital, which has been at the center of several controversies – including a vaccination scandal – and an investigation by the Illinois Attorney General’s Office and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The report revealed millions of dollars in insider contracts and raised questions about oversight by the hospital’s board. Suhail has denied any wrongdoing. 

Markus Schmidt

Markus Schmidt is a reporter for Cardinal News. Reach him at markus@cardinalnews.org.