Beginning Aug. 22, Cleveland Clinic began offering free round-trip shuttle transportation from Huron Hospital for patients to easily get to their appointments at main campus,Euclid, Hillcrest or South Pointe hospitals. Shuttles will operate Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
By JAMES W. WADE III
As part of Cleveland Clinic’s plan to end operations at Huron Hospital within 90 days from its announcement on June 6, Huron Hospital has closed its inpatient, emergency and trauma services effective Aug. 22, after 137 years of operation.
Doctors will continue to see patients at Huron Hospital for outpatient care through Oct. 3 when the new Cleveland Clinic Huron Community Health Center opens. The clinic says the health center is better designed to meet the changing needs of this community and will continue Huron Hospital’s dedication to chronic disease management, which is a critical need in this neighborhood and that it also will provide primary, preventive and wellness care.
For specialty care not offered at Cleveland Clinic Huron Community Health Center, or inpatient care that requires an overnight stay, Cleveland Clinic welcomes patients to its main campus, as well as Euclid, Hillcrest and South Pointe hospitals or elsewhere within the health system.
Cleveland Clinic’s Board of Directors announced in June that Huron Hospital would close because it was not sustainable for a long-term future. The decision followed an extensive evaluation of data and ongoing efforts to preserve the hospital. Factors that led to the hospital’s closing include a declining population, fewer patients using the hospital, and a shift in healthcare toward outpatient care.
Cleveland Clinic says that it remains committed to helping Huron Hospital employees who are interested in staying within the health system find a job. To date, through daily ongoing efforts, more than 60 percent of Huron employees who applied for new positions within the health system have been offered jobs. Huron employees will continue to receive priority hiring through their severance period.
Beginning Aug. 22, Cleveland Clinic began offering free round-trip shuttle transportation from Huron Hospital for patients to easily get to their appointments at main campus, Euclid, Hillcrest or South Pointe hospitals. Shuttles will operate Monday through Friday from 6:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
During these same hours, if space is available, this service will also be available for those who wish to visit a sick relative or friend who is hospitalized in one of these four hospitals. Patients will be given first priority on shuttles. Now this is something Huron Hospital has provided to its patients in the past. Shuttles would go to their house and pick people up and bring them to Huron Hospital.
“Cleveland Clinic is committed to ensuring that patients get the care they need in our health system, and then return to the Cleveland Clinic Huron Community Health Center for follow-up care close to home,” said David Bronson, M.D., President of Cleveland Clinic Regional Hospitals. “Through several initiatives including electronic medical records, patient navigators and free shuttle service, we will provide seamless, high-quality care.”
“The hard work of our Huron Hospital employees, physicians and volunteers will be carried on at the Cleveland Clinic Huron Community Health Center,” said Gus Kious, M.D., President of Huron Hospital. “We thank Huron’s caregivers for their dedication to making a difference in the lives of so many people over the years.”
The closing of Huron Hospital has been hotly debated issue for months, as city leaders in both Cleveland and East Cleveland at first opposed the decision. Recently the city of East Cleveland agreed to a deal from Cleveland Clinic.
East Cleveland ended legal action after Cleveland Clinic agreed to give millions to the suburb to cover income taxes that will be gone with the loss of 800 jobs. Cleveland Clinic will also demolish Huron Hospital, turn the land into green space, and give it to the city.
The City of Cleveland is still fighting to avoid the closure of the hospital.