Rallies held outside Steward Massachusetts hospitals ahead of loan agreement deadline

Several rallies are being held outside of Massachusetts hospitals owned by Dallas-based Steward Health Care amid fears that the facilities could be negatively affected by the health system's April 30 loan agreement deadline.

Steward shared a "six-point action plan" in late February to address its ongoing financial troubles, which included a $150 million cash infusion from its current lenders in a financing agreement that extended through April 30 to help the health system get back on its feet.

Gatherings held by the Our Community, Our Hospital coalition will occur outside of Steward's Morton Hospital in Taunton, Mass., Good Samaritan Medical Center in Brockton, Mass., Holy Family Hospital in Methuen, Mass., Holy Family Hospital in Haverhill, Mass., St. Anne's Hospital in Fall River, Mass., Carney Hospital in Boston, and St Elizabeth's Medical Center in Brighton, Mass. 

The coalition has called upon state officials and stakeholders to ensure service disruptions and closures of the Steward hospitals do not occur, according to a news release shared with Becker's

"The loss of any of these facilities will deliver a devastating blow to the entire healthcare infrastructure in the commonwealth, particularly to some of the most vulnerable and marginalized patients and families who will be subject to dangerous delays in care, be forced to travel longer distances for care, and for many, to go without care altogether," the coalition news release said. 

Massachusetts Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Edward Markey recently sent letters to the six private credit funds that are holding Steward's debt to demand answers regarding the loans and to ask for loan modifications to protect Steward's hospitals. 

The private credit funds are Brigade Capital Management, MidOcean Credit Partners, Oaktree Capital Management, Owl Creek Asset Management, Sound Point Capital Management and WhiteHawk Capital Partners.

"Steward's financial ruin would be devastating for the people of Massachusetts, and it would be deeply troubling if private lenders were to continue squeezing Steward rather than assist in potential solutions to keep the hospitals open," the senators said in the letters.

Steward did not have an immediate comment for Becker's regarding the loan deadline or rallies. 

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