Released: September 29, 2022
The Foundation for Delaware County filed a petition seeking an emergency injunction from the Delaware County Court of Common Pleas to suspend Prospect Crozer’s planned closure of Delaware County Memorial Hospital (DCMH).
The Court has ordered that a hearing be held on Friday, October 7 to decide the matter.
Both the County and the Foundation agree that the September 21 Prospect Crozer announcement regarding its intention to close DCMH within 60 days and transition the facility to an outpatient behavioral health center with reduced services and a greatly reduced staff was not only damaging to the public health of County residents, but also not in accordance with the terms of the agreement signed by Prospect.
While Delaware County and a number of county stakeholders and local elected officials oppose Prospect Crozer’s plans to close a hospital that has served Delaware County residents for more than 100 years, it is The Foundation for Delaware County which holds legal standing, due to the terms of the July 1, 2016 sale of the Crozer-Keystone Health System to the California-based Prospect Crozer.
Per the terms of the sale, Prospect Crozer committed to operating DCMH for a period of no less than 10 years, and the Foundation has the authority to enforce the agreement.
“Closing Delaware County Memorial would be catastrophic for our residents that have depended on its services for generations,” said Delaware County Council Chair Dr. Monica Taylor. “And, over 300 high-quality jobs would be lost due to this hastily announced plan, developed without input from the County. It is an unacceptable course of action by Prospect Crozer, and the County remains committed to ensuring that the public health needs of our residents are a priority over the financial considerations of a for-profit corporation.”
The plan outlined by Prospect Crozer constitutes a public health emergency that would subject the residents of Delaware County to seriously degraded health services—especially those residents in eastern Delaware County, including those in Upper Darby, who would find it more difficult to access an emergency room.
The planned closing will also adversely impact a total of 334 employees. A letter sent by Prospect Crozer to its employees includes a target date of November 26, meaning that many employees may face termination on the Saturday of the Thanksgiving holiday.
The County and the Foundation continue to support all local leaders in an effort to bring about a positive solution to address Crozer Health’s long-term operational and financial viability.