CLEVELAND - The Cleveland Clinic and city of East Cleveland have reached an agreement regarding the future of Huron Hospital that still calls for its closure, but offers a financial benefit for the city.
During a news conference at Huron Hospital Wednesday afternoon, East Cleveland Mayor Gary Norton and Cleveland Clinic CEO and President Toby Cosgrove, M.D., said the two entities agreed that the clinic will give the city of East Cleveland $10 million over a five-year period to cover the loss of income tax resulting from the hospital's closure. The Cleveland Clinic will also tear down the building and give the land to the city.
Meanwhile, the city of Cleveland announced late Wednesday afternoon that it is taking the matter to federal court, filing a lawsuit.
"The loss of Huron Hospital's trauma center will create a gap in the service that we provide to our community because in life and death situations, every minute counts. That is why it is important that we have a trauma center on the east side of Cleveland. Negotiations failed to keep the trauma center open and therefore, we are taking the matter to federal court," said Mayor Frank G. Jackson.
The city is holding a news conference to announce the details.
The Cleveland Clinic issued a statement after learning about the city of Cleveland's lawsuit:
"We are disappointed to learn that the City of Cleveland filed a lawsuit today related to emergency/trauma services at Huron Hospital. Given the dramatic decline in patient volume, the hospital is unable to maintain a safe trauma program for patients long-term. With the formation of the Northern Ohio Trauma System (NOTS), we are committed to providing the highest level of trauma care for all citizens of Northeast Ohio that mirrors the best programs across the United States.
"The day we announced that Huron Hospital was closing, we immediately reached out to the Mayors of Cleveland and East Cleveland to engage in conversations about this issue. We are pleased to have reached an agreement today with the City of East Cleveland that will benefit its community and not include litigation.
"Unfortunately, the City of Cleveland has chosen to litigate rather than have dialogue that may have led to a more productive outcome."
Earlier this year, the Clinic announced plans to close Huron Hospital, which was met with opposition from the city leaders in East Cleveland and Cleveland. Opponents to closing the hospital said that increasing travel time for trauma patients in the area could be a matter of life and death.
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