ATLANTA (AP) – Certainly one of Atlanta’s largest hospitals mentioned it plans to shut inside two months after struggling greater than $100 million in losses over the previous 12 months.
WellStar introduced late Wednesday that the Atlanta medical heart will shut on Nov. 1. The hospital operates a busy emergency room and is a vital well being care supplier for a lot of low-income residents.
Wellstar CEO Candice L. Saunders mentioned in an announcement, “For a number of years, Wellstar has invested in AMC at a big loss to supply extra time to associate on a artistic, long-term, sustainable resolution for the way forward for the hospital and continues to function.
However these efforts, together with potential partnerships with authorities businesses, haven’t materialized, he mentioned.
The announcement instantly grew to become a problem in Georgia’s contentious governor’s race. It additionally prompted a rebuke from Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens, who mentioned in a letter to Saunders that town had been blindsided by the information and wanted “quick data” concerning the firm’s plans and the “monumental well being and financial impression.” What was being executed to scale back that may be on our neighborhood.”
“Atlanta Medical Heart is a vital component of Atlanta’s healthcare ecosystem,” Dickens mentioned. “It serves a few of the most weak individuals in Atlanta.”
WellStar has operated the 460-bed hospital since 2016, however a hospital has operated at that location in downtown Atlanta for greater than a century. Its 24-hour emergency room has the best trauma designation and might present complete therapy for coronary heart assaults, strokes, mind accidents and different critical medical circumstances.
Its closing will depart close by Grady Memorial Hospital as town’s solely emergency room with the identical designation.
Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams mentioned Wednesday that the shutdown is “one other instance of Brian Kemp’s failure to serve the individuals of Georgia.”
Georgia has skilled a spate of rural hospital closings that Abrams and different Democrats say the Republican governor may have prevented if he had totally expanded Medicaid. Kemp has proposed a extra restricted extension that may require recipients to work or attend faculty.
Wellstar has mentioned that full Medicaid enlargement won’t save Atlanta Medical Heart.
Kemp’s workplace mentioned in an announcement that the governor shared neighborhood considerations concerning the impression of the Atlanta Medical Heart closure and that different hospitals and well being care suppliers have been in “lively conversations” about how it might have an effect on their wants and companies. .
“As he works to make applicable changes, Governor Camp will proceed to construct on the coverage improvements launched over the previous 4 years which have decreased prices for Georgians throughout the state and improved entry to high quality well being care,” the assertion mentioned. has elevated,” the assertion mentioned.
WellStar mentioned it has spent greater than $350 million to cowl losses and make enhancements at AMC since taking up the hospital in 2016. The corporate operates 9 different hospitals in Georgia, however just lately moved to shut one other facility — emergency rooms and inpatient beds in Atlanta. Medical Heart South
That hospital was in East Level, additionally an space with a comparatively excessive proportion of low-income residents.
Wellstar mentioned in an announcement that it spent greater than $915 million in “uncompensated care” for sufferers throughout the area final 12 months and stays a number one supplier of charity care in Georgia and the U.S.