Residents host rally in support of hospital

Published 1:54 pm Thursday, November 17, 2016

Wednesday night, Belhaven residents and officials gathered in front of the former Vidant Pungo Hospital property in support of reopening the facility.

As of Monday, Pantego Creek LLC, which owns the property, began the demolition process with asbestos removal after its membership voted in favor of it.

In response, Pungo Medical Center, a nonprofit formed to oversee the reopening of the facility, issued a statement saying it would make a $500,000 offer for the property on Friday, and request a closing date of 60 days, with a 30-day extension if needed.

Pantego Creek issued the following statement: “Pungo Medical Center, led by Belhaven Mayor Adam O’ Neal, has had more than two and a half years to find an alternative solution for a new hospital. To date, this effort has not demonstrated that conditions necessary for the now-expired USDA loan commitment can be met, nor have the Mayor or the Medical Center presented a viable plan with a realistic timeline. Since the old Pungo District Hospital closed more than two years ago, the aging buildings have deteriorated to the point that the buildings will have to be demolished and completely rebuilt in order for a hospital to open on the property, a circumstance that would make any plan very difficult to successfully implement.”

View the video from the rally HERE.