'Mercy for Mercy': Physicians, lawmakers protest closure of Chicago hospital

Dozens of physicians, activists and lawmakers gathered Aug. 19 to protest the closure of Mercy Hospital & Medical Center in Chicago, according to WBEZ

Mercy announced July 29 that it will close next year, pending approval from the state review board. The South Side hospital cited monthly operating losses of $4 million as the reason for the closure. The hospital also needs about $100 million in capital investments over five years, according to WBEZ. 

On Aug. 19, the protestors, which included physicians who trained at Mercy, hospital employees and lawmakers, held signs that read "Mercy for Mercy" and "Black Healthcare Matters." The crowd chanted "Save Mercy Now." 

Though state lawmakers can't stop the hospital from shutting down, Illinois state Rep. Lamont Robinson, a Democrat from Chicago, said he hopes to slow down the process. 

"We cannot say Black Lives Matter, and then allow Mercy Hospital to close and reduce healthcare resources on the South Side of Chicago," he said. 

Mr. Robinson called on another hospital to take over Mercy or for a group of South Side hospitals to try to join forces. 

The decision to close came after a deal fell through in which Mercy would have joined forces with three other hospitals on Chicago's South Side — Advocate Trinity Hospital, South Shore Hospital and St. Bernard Hospital — to create an independent health system. Mercy and the other hospitals called off the deal in late May after the state funding for the $1.1 billion project fell through.

Read the full WBEZ article here

More articles on patient flow:
New Hampshire hospital postpones surgeries after equipment failure
Illinois hospital to end inpatient emergency services
Wildfires force evacuation of 151-bed California hospital

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