A state audit shows public health organization Healthfirst Bluegrass pre-selected a developer to build a clinic, which creates a conflict of interest that could jeopardize some federal grant money for the project.
The nearly $12 million dollar clinic is scheduled to be built on Southland Drive in Lexington. According to the audit, pre-selected developer Ted Mims owns 10 percent of the property and is the landlord. The audit also shows HealthFirst has cash-flow problems that threaten its financial viability. Lexington Mayor Jim Gray requested the audit because of concerns about the clinic construction project.
The proposed clinic is designed to serve thousands of new patients who are poor or lack sufficient insurance. Construction has not begun, but is tentatively scheduled for October. For now, the State Auditor is recommending HealthFirst get a more secure handling on its finances.