Forrest General Hospital is the hub of health care in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Founded in 1952, the regional medical center serves southern Mississippi and its "Hub City," so named for its importance to early rail and lumber interests in the Pine Belt area. With some 400 acute care beds, Forrest General offers general medical and surgical care, as well as specialty care in heart disease, cancer, and women's health. Other facilities include the 90-bed Pine Grove behavioral health center for psychiatric and substance abuse treatment, a 25-bed inpatient rehabilitation facility, and an outpatient surgery center. The hospital system also operates a home health care agency and two nearby community hospitals.
In addition to the main inpatient and outpatient facilities, Forrest General operates the nearby 100-bed Highland Community Hospital in Picayune. It also manages the Walthall County General Hospital in Tylertown through a lease management agreement. Within the Forrest General inpatient building, a 30-bed long-term acute care hospital is operated by partner Regency Hospital Company. Altogether, the system handles about 30,000 inpatient visits and 100,000 emergency room visits each year.
Forrest General claims many area and state wide firsts including, in 1969, the area's first emergency helicopter patient transport service. It is now the nation's longest continuously operating air ambulance. The hospital purchased Highland Community Hospital in 2006, and then constructed a new $76 million version of the hospital on a main state highway in 2009. – less