St. Vincent Charity Medical Center to close Friday, ahead of original plan, citing patient safety

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CLEVELAND, Ohio — So many clinical caregivers have left the soon-to-close St. Vincent Charity Medical Center that it is closing four days early to keep patients safe, the hospital said Tuesday.

On Friday, the St. Vincent Charity will end all emergency hospital and medical care. It’s before the announced closing date was Tuesday, November 15.

“Patient safety is our No. 1 priority,” the hospital said.

Acute and surgical care employees will work until Nov. 15 to help with administrative, operational and setup issues, hospital administrators said. And some caregivers will continue to work after November 15 to help reduce acute care services.

The hospital will be renamed St. Vincent Charity Community Health Center.

St. Vincent’s psychiatric emergency department, which remains open, will be called St. Vincent Charity Community Health Center Psychiatric Emergency Services, the hospital said.

The Department of Psychiatric Emergency Services — one of two dedicated psychiatric emergency departments in the state — received $4.4 million in October from the ADAMHS Board of Cuyahoga County, enabling it to continue operating in 2023.

St. Vincent will continue outpatient services. Its Cleveland campus will offer primary care, behavioral health, outpatient addiction treatment, occupational health, same-day urgent care and adult walk-in visits, psychiatric emergency services and a specialized pharmacy.

The St. Vincent’s Solon campus will have occupational medicine and emergency care.

Saint Vincent said declining inpatient volumes, the COVID-19 pandemic, and other changes in the healthcare landscape resulted in financial hardship and the hospital’s closure.

The closure will not result in an interruption of service

Hospital administrators said Tuesday that the closure of St. Vincent’s emergency medical department will not negatively impact the surrounding community.

For years, St. Vincent did not have a trauma center that took cases transported by EMS, such as gunshot wounds, heart attacks or strokes. Even before the closure was announced, EMS transported those patients to nearby hospitals, St. Vincent said.

The hospital’s medical emergency department primarily handles urgent care cases that do not require a full emergency department or inpatient stays.

There are four emergency departments within an 5 mile radius of St. Vincent: University Hospitals, MetroHealth, Cleveland Clinic, and Cleveland Clinic Lutheran Hospital.

“First responders are well trained in the appropriate service locations for patients,” St. Vincent said.

St. Vincent’s services go to other hospitals

Other hospitals are taking some services provided by St. Vincent, it was previously announced.

Crystal Clinic orthopedic center based in Fairlawn will resume the operations of St. Vincent Orthopedics and spine medical services in multiple locations on November 15. As a result, St. Vincent Spine and Orthopedic Institute locations in Independence, Solon, Westlake, Willoughby and Warren will remain open.

The Southwest General Health Center takes over Saint-Vincent Bariatric Surgery Center and move it to Middleburg Heights. Bariatric Center Medical Director Leslie Pristas, along with approximately 15 clinical and non-clinical members of St. Vincent’s bariatric surgery care team, will move to the main campus of Southwest General, Southwest said in late October. The change will take place at an undetermined time in November.

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