Connect with us

Health Care

Memorial Hospital shutting down intensive care unit



On Friday, Care New England officials notified Memorial Hospital medical staff that they were going to close the intensive care unit as of Monday (today),” writes United Nurses and Allied Health Professionals (UNAP) General Counsel Chris Callaci. “CNE has also instructed first responders not to transport patients to the Memorial emergency room and issued internal directives dramatically limiting the types of patients who may be admitted for care at the hospital.”

Memorial Hospital issued a memorandum dated November 9 listing medical conditions that would no longer be treated due to “the diminution of clinical capability at Memorial due to the closure of the Intensive Care Unit.” The medical conditions, 36 in all, are neurological, cardiovascular, pulmonary, renal, gastrointestinal and more in nature, including strokes, myocardial infarctions and pneumonia with impending respiratory failure. In addition, elective surgery will only be performed on low-risk patients.

> Care New England is in the process of trying to close Memorial Hospital, but to do so it must get a “reverse certificate of need” approved. UNAP maintains that Car New England is sidestepping the process.

“This is a blatant and irresponsible attempt by Care New England to sidestep the reverse certificate of need process and begin shuttering Memorial Hospital before state regulators have authorized any such measures,” said Callaci. “We are continuing to review the situation and hope to work with local and state leaders to preserve critical services and jobs at Memorial Hospital for as long as possible.”

UNAP Local 5082 represents approximately 150 registered nurses, social workers, pharmacists, laboratory technologists and other health professionals at Memorial Hospital.

About the Author

Steve Ahlquist is Uprise RI's co-founder and lead reporter. He has covered human rights, social justice, progressive politics and environmental news for nearly a decade.