6 hospitals closing departments, ending services

Several healthcare organizations recently closed medical units or ended services to shore up finances, focus on more in-demand services or prevent patient care lapses. 

Here are six:

1. Grace Medical Center in Lubbock, Texas, will permanently close its emergency department Dec. 5. The closure comes as the hospital's owner opens the Grace Surgical Hospital in Lubbock. The short-stay surgical hospital is three stories and has 32 beds. 

2. Thousand Oaks, Calif.-based Los Robles Regional Medical Center will close its 4-year-old pediatric intensive care unit in December. The hospital cited a decline in demand as the reason for the closure. 

3. Dothan, Ala.-based Flowers Hospital will end inpatient pediatric services in December. The hospital cited an increased demand for pediatric outpatient services and decreased demand for children requiring an overnight hospital stay as reasons for its decision.

4. Greenville, S.C.-based Prisma Health permanently closed the ED at its North Greenville Hospital in Travelers Rest, S.C., in November. The ED had been temporarily closed since April 5, when Prisma converted the hospital into its primary inpatient facility for COVID-19 patients in upstate South Carolina. Prisma Health cited underutilization of the ED for its decision to permanently close it. 

5. Quincy (Mass.) Medical Center, which has operated as a freestanding ED since 2014, closed Nov. 1.  The closure made Quincy the largest city in Massachusetts without an ED. 

6. University Hospital Summerville, a 231-bed hospital in Augusta, Ga., will close its ED by the end of the year. The hospital said it intends to replace the ED with an urgent care center that will offer a more appropriate level of care for the service area.

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