Pawtucket’s Memorial Hospital to close after proposed sale falls through

Memorial Hospital in Pawtucket. Photo by Steve Klamkin WPRO News


WPRO News and the Associated Press

One of the largest hospital chains in Rhode Island says it will close Memorial Hospital in Pawtucket after a deal to sell it to a California-based health system fell through.

Care New England on Tuesday said its board voted Monday night to close the facility.

The Providence-based nonprofit health system had taken over the struggling hospital in 2013. It had been working to sell the hospital to Prime HealthCare, which owns a hospital in Woonsocket. But negotiations recently fell apart because the two sides could not agree on terms.

“The magnitude of the losses at Memorial cannot be sustained and jeopardizes our other hospitals and provider organizations. We have exhausted our very best efforts and those of some nationally-recognized consultants to improve the situation without the outcomes we had hoped to achieve,” said Care New England board Chairman Charles R. Reppucci.

“While difficult, these actions represent a necessary and critical step in restoring financial health to Care New England while ensuring the future of hospitals and facilities many have come to rely on for their care. This has been a long and complex process that has been met with unrelenting dedication and compassionate care from all who work at Memorial Hospital.”

“We will support both the employees and the community in this transition so the well-established legacy of care in Pawtucket is not lost, but rather adapted for the demands of today’s health care landscape.”

The state Department of Health will need to sign off on the closure.

Dr. James Fanale, Care New England’s incoming CEO, tells WPRI-TV he’s “disappointed” by the outcome.

Pawtucket Mayor Donald Grebien says he thinks the closure could “have been avoided.”

“My heart goes out to anyone who may lose their job,” said Governor Gina Raimondo. “I encourage Care New England to do everything to make sure people don’t lose their jobs. Maybe they can be redeployed to Women and Infants or Butler. But it is a sad day.”