July 24, 2014

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Inpatient care to end next month at Wadsworth hospital

Summa Wadsworth-Rittman Hospital will stop admitting patients for overnight care in mid-July — several months earlier than expected.

On Friday, Summa Health System announced the hospital in Wadsworth would close as an inpatient facility on July 13 and stop admitting patients a few days before.

A Summa spokesperson said the facility, renamed the Summa Health Center at Wadsworth-Rittman, will continue to offer emergency room and other health care services for outpatient care.

Dr. Thomas Malone, chief operating officer of Summa Health System, said Summa had planned to close the hospital in the fall, but moved the date up to allow employees who would be affected by the change to move on to other career opportunities.

“Some have taken other jobs with the facility, some within Summa, and a number of employees were able to get jobs elsewhere,” Malone said.

As a result, the hospital would have difficulty caring for overnight patients past July, he said.

The hospital had 52 beds, including eight intensive care beds, but Malone said the hospital was seeing less than 20 inpatients a day and would prefer to use the space to increase other health care offerings.

“We’ve had a geriatric physician that’s been coming down once a week, and we’d like to expand those visits,” he said.

Malone said the organization is working with local physicians in the Wadsworth-Rittman area to try to offer the services the community needs most. He said they’d like to increase the number of primary physicians available in the area with the extra space at the health center.

“We know there’s a need for four or five primary care physicians in the community,” he said. “We’d like to be able to serve that need.”

Services that will be offered at the Summa Health Center at Wadsworth-Rittman include:
• cardiology
• diagnostics imaging
• emergency medicine
• general medical and surgical services
• geriatric medicine
• gynecology
• outpatient infusion services
• neurology
• oncology/hematology
• orthopedic services
• pain management
• plastic surgery
• podiatry
• primary care
• pulmonary care
• sports medicine
• vascular surgery
Contact reporter Loren Genson at (330) 721-4063 or lgenson@medina-gazette.com. Follow her on Twitter @lorengenson.