Pennsylvania hospital banned from reopening after racking up 40 citations

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Americore Health acquired Ellwood City (Pa.) Medical Center in October 2017 and closed the hospital in December 2019. During that period, the Pennsylvania Department of Health cited the hospital more than 40 times, according to GoErie.com.

The first violation was reported roughly one month after Americore acquired the hospital. At that time, the hospital was cited for failing to properly inform the health department that it cut cardiovascular services on weekends. Since then, Ellwood City Medical Center has received dozens of citations for various deficiencies, including those related to equipment and communication, according to the report.

On Nov. 27, state health officials ordered the hospital to suspend inpatient and emergency services due to serious violations, including failure to pay employees and the inability to offer surgical services. Americore, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in December, shut down Ellwood City Medical Center Dec. 10.

Ellwood City Medical Center submitted a plan Dec. 18 to state health officials to correct the deficiencies. The health department conducted an onsite inspection Jan. 3 and determined the hospital "had not shown its suitability to resume providing any health care services," according to the report.

In a Jan. 13 letter to hospital officials, the health department outlined the most recent deficiencies, including a lack of adequate security and failure to remove certain drugs and radioactive materials after the hospital closed. Though the hospital still has a provisional license, the ban on services will remain in effect until the hospital properly implements a corrective action plan, Susan Coble, deputy secretary for quality assurance at the Pennsylvania Department of Health, told GoErie.com. 

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