Case study: Credit crunch forces MI hospital to close

It's getting to be a real trend: Hospitals are going out of business because they can't make ends meet and no one will buy them. In this case the moribund facility is non-profit North Oakland Hospital in Pontiac, MI, which filed for bankruptcy after getting too deep in the hole to keep going. Execs there thought they had buyers that were going to turn the hospital into a for-profit venture. 

Now, though, the buyout deal has fallen through, and the hospital has shut its doors. The deal failed because the buyers couldn't get the credit together--more trouble from the struggling economy.

Pontiac Mayor Clarence Phillips is trying to work with state officials to find some way to save the hospital. Despite the fact that its doors have closed, he feels that it may still be possible to bring it back to life. But it does seem that the odds are stacked against him.

The next victim on the chopping block may be Lincoln Park Hospital in Chicago, which lost $15 million last year. Like North Oakland, Lincoln Park has been forced to hire a firm to find a buyer. With the U.S. credit crisis still in full effect, if a buyer cannot be found, it may be forced to close, too.

To learn more about the hospital:
- read this Free Press piece