News & Events

Proposed Closures of Local Hospital Units and Services by HealthAlliance will be focus of DPH Public Hearing on Aug. 1

07.30.2018

What: Department of Public Health hearing on HealthAlliance’s proposed closure of services at both Leominster and Burbank Hospitals

When: Wednesday, August 1 at 6 p.m.

Where: The DoubleTree Hotel in Leominster, 99 Erdman Way

With UMass Memorial HealthAlliance-Clinton Hospital steamrolling ahead with its plans to decimate more local health care services, the Department of Public Health will hold a public hearing on Wednesday, August 1 to hear from the community regarding its concerns about HealthAlliance’s plans to close the following:

  • In-patient pediatric services at the Leominster campus
  • Outpatient urgent care services at the Burbank campus
  • The outpatient cardiac and pulmonary services at the Leominster campus

Despite the fact that the UMass hospital system makes enormous profits annually ($251 million between 2013 and 2016), it has been eliminating local health care service and closing units/clinics in northern Worcester county at a staggering rate in recent months. Their claim for doing so is “profitability.”

“HealthAlliance made over $250 million dollars in one recent three-year period,” said Natalie M. Pereira, an RN at Leominster Hospital, “yet they insist on closing local health care services so that they can be ‘profitable.’ It’s ridiculous, and it’s harmful to the community.”

“If HealthAlliance succeeds in closing these services, local residents will feel the effects immediately,” continued Pereira. “It will result in very sick children and adults experiencing significant delays in getting the care they need. It will result in children being boarded in emergency departments instead of receiving appropriate care in age-appropriate settings by specialized staff. And it will result in children and adults alike being shepherded to Worcester and Boston for care they could and should receive right here.”

Added Pereira: “How often can one hospital network cut essential services for the very residents it is supposed to be serving? UMass Memorial Health Care has already closed the endoscopy and other ambulatory services at Clinton Hospital; the Plumley Village Health Center in Worcester; and 13 psychiatric beds at UMass Memorial Medical Centers’ University Campus. That’s why this public hearing is so important: It is essentially our last chance to tell HealthAlliance, and the DPH, that they need to stop the cuts and recommit to caring for the community it promised to serve.”

FPO