The Service Employees International Union is asking Partners HealthCare to keep medical services in Lynn as Partners prepares to close a community hospital in the city.
“Citing declining patient revenue as a rationale for denying one of the poorest cities in Massachusetts access to a hospital is a specious argument at best,” Veronica Turner, executive vice president of SEIU Local 1199, wrote to Partners’ chief executive, Dr. David Torchiana. “The business tactics of Partners seem to completely trump any meaningful commitment to the healthcare needs for the low-income residents of Massachusetts.”
Partners and its subsidiary, North Shore Medical Center, operate hospital campuses in Lynn and Salem. It plans to close the Lynn campus and consolidate operations in neighboring Salem over the next three years.
Hospital officials said they plan to keep an emergency room in Lynn for at least three years, but union officials said the city needs permanent emergency services.
The union also wants an independent study of the community’s health care needs and a public meeting before Partners makes any changes.
A North Shore Medical Center spokeswoman, Laura Fleming, said, “We continue to work with our collective bargaining units to address their concerns as we work through our plans to improve care in this region.”