Wellstar Atlanta Medical Center to Close
Wellstar Atlanta Medical Center is a large, 460-bed hospital located in Atlanta, Georgia. It is operated by the Wellstar Health System and has more than 700 physicians on staff. It is a Level I Trauma Center and an Advanced Primary Stroke Center. It also has a Level III Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
Wellstar’s decision to close two facilities in metro Atlanta
The closure of two medical facilities in metro Atlanta is a blow for the Atlanta community. Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens recently requested information on Wellstar Health System’s plans to close Atlanta Medical Center, a vital facility located in the city’s historic Old Fourth Ward. In his letter, Dickens said the city was “bummed out” by the announcement, which will have far-reaching effects on health care in metro Atlanta and the economy.
The Atlanta Medical Center was originally an infirmary run by the Tabernacle Baptist Church. In 1913, the church sold the facility to the Georgia Baptist Convention. The Atlanta Medical Center was renamed Georgia Baptist Hospital and moved to the Old Fourth Ward. In 1997, the hospital was purchased by Tenet Healthcare, which renamed it Atlanta Medical Center. In 2016, Wellstar purchased the facility.
Losses at Atlanta Medical Center
The recent announcement that Wellstar Atlanta Medical Center will close its emergency room and move its patients to Grady Hospital is not only a tragic decision, it is also a public health crisis. While the system is trying to reach out to local healthcare providers and government agencies for help, no one is sure what will happen to the employees. The announcement will also put a strain on the hospital’s emergency room, which is already over capacity.
The health system has cited several factors for the closure, including declining revenue and increasing costs for staff and supplies. This led to $107 million in losses for the last year, and $350 million since 2016. The hospital also blamed Kemp’s refusal to expand Medicaid, a policy that has been opposed by Democratic gubernatorial candidates.
Impact on patients
The Wellstar Atlanta Medical Center is a comprehensive medical center in Atlanta, Georgia. It is owned and operated by the Wellstar Health System and features 460 beds and more than 700 doctors. It has a Level I Trauma Center and Advanced Primary Stroke Center, and is home to a Neurointensive Care Unit and Level III Neonatal ICU.
The Atlanta Medical Center primarily served low-income patients and people without health insurance. It is located in Atlanta’s Old Fourth Ward neighborhood, which is predominantly African American. The closure of the AMC will put a strain on Grady Hospital, which will have to take on a disproportionate number of new patients. Atlanta Mayor Michael Dickens has blasted the decision, demanding a meeting between Wellstar and the community.
Impact on employees
Wellstar’s decision to shut down the Atlanta Medical Center is causing a stir among employees. The company has not said whether the decision is related to Medicaid expansion in Georgia. The closure will impact thousands of people in metro Atlanta. In addition, other area hospitals will struggle to accommodate the loss of a large hospital. Grady Health Systems is expected to absorb a large portion of AMC’s emergency room visitors.
Although the decision will not have immediate negative effects on the Atlanta community, the loss of a level-I trauma center is certainly an unsettling development. The hospital is home to the highest-rated emergency room in Atlanta and has been operating in the city for over 100 years. The closure of the Atlanta Medical Center will also have a devastating impact on the healthcare accessibility in the area.
Impact on the region
In an effort to mitigate the negative effects of Wellstar’s decision to close its downtown Atlanta medical center, the city is looking to other healthcare providers, government agencies and community organizations to form partnerships. In a letter to Wellstar’s CEO, Atlanta Mayor Andre Dickens requested a meeting to discuss ways to mitigate the impact on health.
The closing of Atlanta Medical Center has caused alarm among the community. It serves a largely underserved and minority population. The closure is the second Wellstar hospital to close in less than six months. Though Wellstar said it is committed to the community, closing two hospitals in less than six months will have a negative impact on patients. In addition to a reduction in medical services, the closure will result in a lack of a transition plan for current patients. Without a formal referral system in place, patients and their families will have nowhere to turn. This will lead to a reduction in healthcare access for metro Atlanta.