'This will cost lives': Community braces for Texas hospital to close

Texas Vista Medical Center in San Antonio, part of Dallas-based Steward Health Care, will close May 1 after more than 40 years, leaving many concerned about access to care in the area, Fox29 reported April 27.

The 325-bed hospital cited mounting financial challenges — exacerbated by the pandemic — as the reason for the closure, with no health system or government agency coming in to take over the facility. 

"This will cost lives, in terms of saving lives, minutes matter," Adriana Rocha Garcia, PhD, a San Antonio District 4 Council Member, told Fox29. "We understand that there will be another hospital, but someone's life will not be able to wait four years, so what are we going to do in the meantime. I'm terrified."

The closure will also result in layoffs for the hospital's 827 employees. So far, more than 300 employees, including over 100 registered nurses, have joined San Antonio-based Baptist Health System.

"Baptist Health System was able to recruit these outstanding professionals who will continue to provide compassionate care to patients across the city and especially to those living on the south side," the health system said in a statement. "Mission Trail Baptist Hospital in the Brooks City Base area and Baptist Medical Center downtown will continue to focus on meeting the healthcare needs of the population of San Antonio's south side."

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