Dayton-based Premier Health to consolidate two hospitals as part of new strategic plan

Closing the hospital will save the system between $7 million and $8 million each year. (Pixabay)

Dayton, Ohio-based Premier Health will close one of its hospitals and consolidate services in an effort to cut costs as part of its 2020 strategic plan. 

The health system announced it will close Good Samaritan Hospital, one of the largest hospitals in the region, by the end of this year, and its services will be consolidated with Miami Valley Hospital.

Miami Valley is located about five miles from Good Samaritan, which should ease the transition for patients, the health system said. 

Nationwide changes to the healthcare industry and "the changing face of Dayton" over the past 10 years forced the change, Premier said. 

"This was not an easy decision, but it was the right decision for the community," Anita Moore, chair of the system's board, said in the announcement. "As a community and as a health system, though, we will without a doubt look back someday and realize that we emerged from this change stronger and more dedicated than ever to our mission." 

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Premier said it will seek to keep Good Samaritan employees within the system, and for those who choose to leave it will offer voluntary retirement and other programs. The hospital currently has more than 2,000 employees, the Dayton Business Journal reports

Premier's new strategic plan is the result of a healthcare industry that is putting increasing focus on outpatient care and in which inpatient admissions have decreased steadily over the past decade. Good Samaritan and Miami Valley both operate at about half capacity, so it made sense to consolidate the two to improve efficiency, according to an article from the Dayton Daily News. 

Premier will also cut operating costs by closing the facility, according to the article. Officials told the newspaper it would cost at least $90 million to keep Good Samaritan up to code over the next 10 years, and the system will save between $7 million and $8 million each year by consolidating the two hospitals. 

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Good Samaritan's closure could also benefit the local community in other ways, according to a second article from the Daily News. The hospital will be torn down and the space will be a "shovel ready" site for reconstruction, and the health system said it would donate $10 million toward redevelopment on the site. 

Tony Schultz, a Dayton native who told the newspaper that he speaks on behalf of a number of neighborhood residents, said community leaders are hoping to attract new business and housing. 

"The hospital is part of this whole community of people who have lived here 30, 40, 50 years," Schultz said. "Redevelopment is really what people want. I am one of many residents who are passionate about it."