‘Bad news’ for the city: 7 reactions to Good Samaritan Hospital’s closure

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‘Bad news’ for the city: 7 reactions to Good Samaritan Hospital’s closure

Premier Health announced Wednesday that Good Samaritan Hospital in Dayton will close by the end of the year, shocking employees and community members in the Miami Valley.

Good Samaritan Hospital will close by the end of 2018, impacting about 1,600 employees. The news came as a surprise to city officials, hospital employees and patients. Premier officials said it was unsustainable to operate two hospitals within five miles of each other.

“Premier Health made this difficult but necessary decision partly in response to the changing national and local dynamics of health care,” company officials said.

Check out some reactions from the community:

1. DAYTON CITY MANAGER SHELLEY DICKSTEIN The city, which only learned hours before Wednesday’s announcement about the hospital’s closure, is concerned about possible disinvestment in the area when it shuts down, said Dayton City Manager Shelley Dickstein.

“This is disappointing and bad news for the city, but we’ve had many times when companies uprooted and left without any conversation or concern about the community they were leaving,” she said.

2. LOCAL RESIDENT Kilo Simmons of Trotwood was visiting his aunt in the hospital at Good Samaritan when the news came on saying the hospital is closing. “It’s just like the grocery stores. Everything is leaving the west side of Dayton, man. Everything. Hospitals. Schools. Grocery stores. Everything is leaving.”

3. COMMUNITY ACTIVIST AMAHA SELLASSIE “I’m like in absolute shock … cause that’s a huge anchor for our community and it literally just seems like the west side is under attack,” he said. “The west side just keeps getting gutted, and I just don’t understand why.”

4. U.S. REP. MIKE TURNER “Like many in the community, I am deeply saddened by this news. I am mindful Premier Health is more than a corporate citizen, but is a community leader. I look forward to working with them on their plans for the future at this site and their other hospital locations.”

5. MONTGOMERY COUNTY COMMISSION PRESIDENT DEBBIE LIEBERMAN “One of the comments that was made to me was (hospital officials) aren’t going to be like NCR and just walk away,” she said. Lieberman said she understands it was not an easy decision for the hospital network and believes Premier will help employees and the community in the transition.

6. STATE REP. STEVE HUFFMAN Huffman, R-Tipp City, is a practicing physician and said the former St. Elizabeth hospital site is a sign there is life after death for large medical centers.

“I thoroughly believe that the Good Samaritan site will become a very viable medical community given time and the assistance of Premier Health and others,” he said.

7. DAYTON MAYOR NAN WHALEY As a nonprofit and community leader, Premier should not just sell the Good Samaritan site to any buyer — it should listen to community input and ensure the site is redeveloped in a beneficial way, said Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley. Hospitals have “cannibalized” themselves by overbuilding in the suburbs, and this loss will be hard on West Dayton, which has endured 40 years of disinvestment, Whaley said.

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