Mercy Hospital and Medical Center is Chicago’s longest operating hospital, which is located in the Bronzeville neighborhood on the Southside of Chicago.
The file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy comes in just weeks after owner, Trinity Health Corp., requested to close the hospital, which was denied by state officials. Before being blocked Trinity Health Corp. wanted to close down the hospital to create an outpatient center with services similar to an urgent care, while also providing X-rays, and CT scans for those southside neighborhoods that would be effected.
In the hospital’s bankruptcy petition, “quality of care” and rising monthly costs were listed as reasons for the filing. The statement reads “While the regulatory process continues, Mercy is losing staff, experiencing mounting financial losses, and challenging the hospital’s ability to maintain a safe environment of care.”
Reportedly, Mercy planned to continue “basic emergency treatment services, diagnostic imaging and care coordination services” until state officials okayed the $13 million outpatient center, which they hoped would open later this year. Last month officials voted & denied Mercy’s application to open the center, but the hospital has been relentless, and appealed the decision.
Activist are arguing that the closure of the hospital will have a negative impact on the health of those in the surrounding areas due to other hospitals being miles away.
The hospital serves mostly low-income residents, the elderly, and people of color.
The community says this move can turn the Southside into a “health care desert.”
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