Tim Drake is an award-winning writer and former journalist and radio host with the National Catholic Register/EWTN. He currently serves as New Evangelization Coordinator for the Holdingford Area Catholic Community in the Diocese of St. Cloud, Minnesota. He resides with his wife and five children in St. Joseph, Minn.
Mercy Hospital in Scranton, Pa. was first opened by the Sisters of Mercy in 1917. Now, as a result of the Health Care Reform Bill, the Catholic hospital is being forced to sell. According to WNEP 16, the facility, and all other Mercy locations in the area are up for sale. That includes: Mercy Hospital in Scranton, Mercy Tyler Hospital in Tunkhannock, and Mercy Special Care Hospital in Nanticoke.
“There is always sadness and mourning when you think of letting go of anything but the Sisters of Mercy are strongly supportive of this decision because we do understand the realities of health care and we do think it’s best for the community,” said Sister Marie Parker of Mercy Health Partners.
“Actually we’re doing well,” added Kevin Cook, CEO of Mercy Health Partners. “We’re ahead of budget for the year. It’s more that when we look out over the landscape of health care over the next five years and the needs of these facilities, the needs of this community, we understand a different level of investment will be needed than what we can do on our own.”
“According to WNEP, ‘Officials said there are numerous reasons for the sale. One big one is the heath care reform bill signed into law this year.’”
Parker and Cook said that much of the required investment is the result of the Health Care Reform Bill, which will require greater spending and less federal reimbursements.
Mercy Health Partners is currently in negotiations with a potential buyer for the Hospital system, which they expect could be finalized by the end of the year.
UPDATE: The American Spectator has more on this story.