Hahnemann Hospital

Andrew Kramer/KYW Newsradio

Hahnemann Hospital no longer accepting trauma patients amid planned closure

June 29, 2019 - 2:21 pm

PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — As it prepares to close its doors for good, Hahnemann University Hospital says its emergency department will remain open, but it will no longer be accepting trauma patients.

The hospital notified the Pennsylvania Trauma Systems Foundation (PTSF) on Friday night that it is de-designating as a Level 1 and 2 trauma facility.  

"After reviewing our plan of closure and in consultation with the Pennsylvania Department of Health, we felt this move is in the best interest of patient safety," Dr. Alexander E. Trebelev, Chief Medical Officer at Hahnemann, said in a release. "Unfortunately, we are facing clinical and operational challenges. We cannot continue to serve trauma and STEM I patients under these conditions."

RELATED: Hahnemann to close, slashing 2,500 jobs

The move comes just days after the hospital announced it would be closing in early September.

"We realize the impact this move, and the closure of Hahnemann has on the city of Philadelphia and surrounding neighborhoods, and most importantly, our staff," said Ron Dreskin, Interim CEO of Philadelphia Academic Health System, the parent company of Hahnemann. "We wish there could have been a more positive outcome for all.  In spite of our best efforts and meetings with numerous city, state, union, insurance carrier and university officials, a financial solution could not be achieved."  

Hahnemann's trauma center, completed in 1986, was Philadelphia's first designated-Level 1 trauma center for adults. 

RELATED: State orders Hahnemann to 'cease and desist' closure

So what's this all mean for patients? 

"If you look at the history of Hahnemann it was the first hospital to have the level one trauma designation, it kind of shows what a loss this is," explained KYW Newsradio's Medical Editor Dr. Brian McDonough.

After Saturday's update broke, we of course, reached out our medical expert.

He explained what being a trauma facility means — basically hospitals with that deistinction have extra surgeons on hand and take other backup measures to deal with these serious situations.

"If you don't have that backup, you really don't have a trauma center, it's not safe for patients," he said. "So, I think what Hahnemann is saying is, 'we can do the run of the mill emergencies, but we're not going to take these traumas that would require so much reinfiorcement.'"

The hospital says the de-designation is effective immediately. We had hoped to get further details, but when KYW Newsradio reached out to get this information, we were told that no one was available to speak.

The City of Philadelphia is also seeking an injunction to prevent Hahneman Hospital from closing without notice. The city is asking Common Pleas Court to order the hospital's owners to keep all services operating, including the emergency room.

KYW Newsradio's Dan Majka and Andrew Kramer contributed to this report.